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Nestle Maggi Noodles Ban In India – Crisis Management

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maggi-logoAbout Nestle Maggi

Maggi seems to be just that perfect quick-snack between meals and is so easy to make that kids sometime make it alone. At the end of May 2015, India’s Food safety administration (FDA) ordered Nestle India to recall its popular Maggi noodles after tests showed that the product contained high levels of lead and MSG. Hence, the 2-minutes ready Maggi Noodles ban in India was declared.

Crisis Management Objective for Maggi Noodles Ban

This case study shows how Nestle reacted and managed the situation using multiple digital channels. 

Implementation Details

The company used various social media channels to take care of its image while the media was putting questions on its image.

  • Initially, the company rejected the accusation that the noodles were unsafe and said on their website and social media accounts that there had been no order to recall any products. A statement on their website said “The quality and safety of our products are the top priorities for our Company. We have in place strict food safety and quality controls at out Maggi factories… We do not add MSG to Maggi Noodles, and glutamate, if present, may come from naturally occurring sources. We are surprised with the content supposedly found in the sample as we monitor the lead content regularly as a part of the regulatory requirements.” This statement was made to revoke the Maggi Noodles ban.
  • Nestle continued to keep its customers up to date on the investigation into the safety of Maggi noodles in India. Nestle stated on the official Maggi Noodles Facebook page, Twitter and website, that extensive testing revealed no excess lead in Maggi Noodles.
  • Nestle used its Twitter and Facebook accounts to answer customers questions about the levels of MSG and lead found in their noodles. The company continued to re-assure customers that the noodles are safe and that they are a transparent company working closely with authorities in India to resolve the issue.
  • Nestle launches a FAQ page on the official website.Maggi Noodles Ban _FAQs
  • Nestle recalled all Maggi noodles from India.After re-assuring customers that its noodles are safe, the brand did a U-turn and decided to recall Maggi noodles from the shelves. CEO Paul Bulcke said “We are working with authorities to clarify the situation and in the meantime Nestle will be withdrawing Maggi noodles from shelves.”
  • Nestle decided to destroy more than $50million worth of Maggi Noodles in India after they were deemed unsafe by regulators.

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Results Achieved

  • When Maggi was deemed unsafe in India, all eyes were on Nestle to see how they would respond and manage the situation. Nestle defended its product on all social media channels and rejected all claims that its noodles were unsafe. They used the best use of social media to connect the masses. Initially, the websites which were used for promotion of the product was now being used for maintaining its image.
  • Maggi India Twitter account makes an impressive effort to respond to every tweet from customers on this issue with a pre-prepared statement explaining that lead occurs naturally in soil and water. Nestle also explained the science behind the reason for the ban in simple terms so customers could understand.
  • The scare was a huge blow to the company, which has been selling its Maggi products for over three decades in India with 80% of the country’s instant noodle market. However, through smart use of social media during the crisis, the brand limited further damage by reassuring and informing customers to encourage them to continue buying the noodles in the future.

Nestle India is preparing a blueprint for a possible re-launch of the Maggi instant noodles brand.

Industry experts and analysts feel the issue of the recall and ban of Maggi noodles in India is likely to be resolved in the next three to six months.

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  • There is 1 comment


    • 7 months ago

      Ryan Steyn   /   Reply

      Although the rumors of Lead in the Maggie Noodles gave a real hard blow to the revenue of Nestle,, it made best use of Social Media to connect with its consumers and encourage them to continue buying Maggie noodles…I have been buying Maggie noodles along with my grocery online and it was a big setback for us as consumers who have been enjoying Maggie for all these years.

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