Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Genus Species: Liptonious Ambiguous

Recently, I wrote Lipton Teas an email about one of their products. It was well constructed, friendly, and downright complimentary.

Dear Lipton-
I most recently had your Lipton Diet Green Tea with Citrus for lunch the other day, and found it delightful.
The crisp, cool taste, with just a hint of sweet citrus took my breath away!
As I was enjoying my Lipton Diet Green Tea with Citrus, I was reading the ingredients, and to my dismay, found that there was aspartame in it!
Recently I have discovered the harmful effects of aspartame, and have quit drinking most carbonated beverages. I hate to think that I can no longer enjoy your wonderful Lipton Diet Green Tea with Citrus!
So - my question is: Is there a way to enjoy the wonderfully refreshing taste of Lipton Diet Green Tea with Citrus without aspartame?
Is there a way to recreate this taste with your 100% natural tea bags and citrus slices? And if so - why do you need to add the aspartame if this is possible?
Thank you for your time -
Cassie D********

The response, which was more than just boring -

Hi Cassie,

Thanks for writing!

Many factors are considered during development of each product includetaste, texture, nutritional value, ability to retain flavor and quality,as well as consumer convenience in usage and preparation.

Unilever uses only those ingredients needed to provide desired flavor,appearance, consistency and nutritional value to its food products, andthen to maintain those qualities during storage and use.

In order to produce good-tasting foods, Unilever also makes use of latest research to select ingredients that provide desired qualities.

Our research staff continues to review existing products and develop newones. This ongoing program provides Unilever consumers with products ofonly highest quality and value. We will certainly report comments to Research and Marketing staffs.Thanks for your interest in our products!

Your friends at Lipton


First off, I had to look up what the heck Unilever even was! Second, they don't even recognize the issue with aspartame - like they don't want to touch it. And when I asked for other options such as using THEIR tea bags with citrus slices in it - they didn't even answer! Sounds like a form letter to me. And THAT means I will have to get a little more personal next time I write a letter to some big company.
I think khw should blow it out her azz......or at least her bosses'. Too bad she is probably 18 and working in a small cubicle with flickering overhead fluorescent lighting and all they have is dial-up. It's just like Joe Vs. The Volcano ALL over again!!!

Stupid Lipton....


This and That said...

Still don't know what Unilever actually is. Sounds like a marketing company. Yes, aspartame is very bad for you, but almost every 'diet' drink/food contains it. There are alternatives but they are more expensive for the companies to use. Xylitol is a great sweetening agent (just don't feed it to your dog). Stevia, whereas not as good for your body as Xylitol, is also a replacement. People with neurological conditions (epilepsy, ADHD even MS because of the neurological component to the myelin sheath not transmitting signals correctly) should stay clear of it. Honestly, everyone would do their body better if they didn't use any food/drink with the word diet or light (lite) in it. Aspartame is in almost every diet food out there. And kids especially shouldn't have any 'diet' things til they are past puberty. So I say go get a coca cola or a real iced tea!

can you guess I read your post on a work day!

locomocos said...

I still don't know what unilever is either. i assumed it was some large food company like Kraft, but who knows! their page is ALSO very ambiguous!!!!

so wait...Stevia is bad, too?

i've actually been using that for most of my sweetening, baking, etc. But it's a no no?

i usually just make real tea, but when i'm on the go - i get lazy.
I will try the tea with citrus slices and then mail it to khw to give to her boss.

This and That said...

Stevia isn't bad. But out of the 2, for sweetening drinks, I would go with Xylitol. But baking with Xylitol is a disaster, so don't recommend trying that. But using Xylitol in coffee, iced tea, for great and actually good for you. it is also in some nasal sprays for kids since it is so safe and tastes good.

Amber said...

Don't drink the koolaide, Doolittle, DON'T DO IT!

Paul said...

Unilever is a multinational, consumer products aggregate based in the Netherlands. They are known mostly for manufacturing laundry detergents. Why do I know this?

Laura said...

Cassie - I have found that when complaining if you demand something as compensation you will get much further. For example: when writing to Lipton I would request a full refund of the cost of the Lipton plus an additional $5.00 to buy a product that didn't cause one or more of the 92 side effects that aspartame can cause. At the same time I would praise the taste yet, as you did, volunteer alternatives. If you make a demand in writing that is otherwise ignored, you have the ability to 1. resubmit that same demand in writing a second time; then if no response you can then 2. request assistance from the Better Business Bureau... Hmm, or you could possibly forget about the $.89 and move on... maybe this is why I should NEVER go to law school...? I would screw an old lady out of her last knee high if I could...

This and That said...

that last sentence of Laura's is possibly one of the funniest I have ever heard a lawyer say!! thanks for the laugh!

Amber said...

They should rename this drink Lipton Diet Green Pee with Citrus, looks like rotten Mountain Dew.
I never understand why Dilaram drinks the diet sodas either, and instead of coffee?! bleh.

locomocos said...

rotten mountain dew?

that just SOUNDS gross....

You should get Dilaram hooked on Hansen's diet sodas, if he's going to continue drinking them. they're pretty good - and no aspartame!

This and That said...

We are hooked on the IZZE sodas. Do they have them outside of Colorado. If not, buy stock....they will be huge...

duff said...

i tend to go for the regular lipton tea with citrus....but that's mostly because i refuse to go anywhere near aspartame, mostly because it tastes nothing like sugar. i figure sooner or later, i'll burn off the calories, even if it's simply by lugging another 12 pack of bottles from the supermarket checkout to my car.

Aaron said...

Do you think that aspertame is the 'worst' thing you're ingesting when you drink 'Liptonious Ambiguous'?

I guess I like aspertame. It probably tastes good and makes Coke taste good.

Also, I don't understand why you're complaining about the few milligrams of aspertame you choose to ingest when you're ingesting many times more 'bad' stuff in one cigarette or one beer.

Anonymous said...

` Next time, call Customer Service....

` What's funny is that I can usually taste aspartame without looking at the ingredients first - only when I look at the ingredients do I go 'Aha!' I thought it was in here!
` I don't even know what's so bad about aspartame, all I know is that it tastes gross. And Splenda... don't get me started with Splenda. Once I went over to someone's house and there was a plate of cookies on the table and I bit into one and it tasted like dust so I had to spit it out!!!
` You know, I don't know what's so bad about saccharine, either, though I just thought of this song about when it was banned by Gilda Radner....
` "Saccharine! How can I get my pants on without laying down, without you?"
` Get out of my head!!!