An activist group hijacked Doritos’ annual “Crash the Super Bowl” commercial competition by creating a parody video of their own entitled “A Cheesy Love Story — The Ad Doritos Don’t Want You to See.” It’s a seemingly super cute video that deals with the Doritos palm oil controversy — which you may or may not have known existed. We’ve posted the video above, and if you don’t want any spoilers check it out first before reading on.
The video was produced by Sum of Us, an international consumer advocacy organization that isn’t happy with how some Doritos flavors use palm oil. As they explain on their YouTube page, “Doritos’ parent company, PepsiCo, buys 427,500 tonnes of palm oil every year. Palm oil production destroys rainforest and threatens species to the point of extinction. This deforestation results in the death of over 1,000 Sumatran orangutans every year.”
The video was targeted to Doritos customers on Facebook and Google, as well as bus ads will run for two weeks in the United Kingdom. So far it’s gotten nearly 2 million views.
PepsiCo, however, isn’t backing down from their practices, instead defending its policy and dismissing Sum of Us. They stated to edie.net:
It is no surprise that SumofUs’ continual mischaracterizations of our palm oil commitments are patently false and run counter to the positive reception our policies have received from expert organizations in this arena. PepsiCo has repeatedly stated that we are absolutely committed to 100 percent sustainable palm oil in 2015 and to zero deforestation in our activities and sourcing.
This latest public relations stunt, focused on fiction rather than facts, does nothing to foster positive dialogue or affect positive change. We find our policies effective and stand by them.
SustainableBrands.com also reports that Rainforest Action Network (RAN) publicly shared a joint communication with UCS, Greenpeace, SumOfUs and the International Labor Rights Forum (ILRF) that was delivered privately to PepsiCo in July. “The letter outlines in specific detail ways in which PepsiCo’s current palm oil commitments fall short of the new benchmark set by its peers for responsible palm oil production and procurement,” the site reports. “RAN says the issues raised at that time remain unaddressed by PepsiCo.”
That said, PepsiCo joined companies such as Colgate-Palmolive, Procter & Gamble and others in committing to “zero deforestation” palm oil sourcing in its company-owned and -operated activities and supply chain by 2020. Organizations like Greenpeace and the Union of Concerned Scientists think it’s a good first step, but they aren’t overly impressed.
Check out the video above. What do you think?