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Social media photo of alcoholic ‘gin and ginger’ ice cream in Nigeria is a hoax

A photo supposedly showing a new Fan Milk ice cream called “FanYogo Gin & Ginger” – containing 12.5% alcohol – went viral on social media in Nigeria in late March 2019.

It continues to circulate on WhatsApp with messages warning parents of the danger to their children.

“Zoom in to see what's written in blue,” reads one message. “Please educate your children and ward [sic] this is being sold in front of school if you are not careful your child may fall victim.”

This researcher got the message a second time on 10 April 2019, through the parents’ association WhatsApp group at his children’s school.

It’s also appeared on a WhatsApp group Africa Check created to monitor the spread of health misinformation.

Fan Milk denies product

On 30 March 2019 Fan Milk released a statement denying the product was theirs.

The company said the image of the ice cream seemed to have come from a poll it held in Ghana to decide the release of a new flavour.

“We've noticed an image circulating on social media purported to be a new FanYogo ‘Gin & Ginger’ flavour,” BusinessGhana quotes the statement as saying. “We categorically deny any planned production or distribution of any such product.”

Investigated by Nigeria’s food regulation body

The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control also debunked the post in a statement on 4 April 2019.  

The agency reassured the public that the product was neither registered nor available in Nigeria.

“The agency has carried out a thorough investigation at the facility of Fan Milk PLC and can confirm that no such product is being developed by the company and no stock of packaging materials of the said ‘FanYogo Gin & Ginger’ were found in the premises,” it said.

The food control agency added that Fan Milk had had sent it a letter advising that the image was “false, mischievous and malicious”. – Allwell Okpi (24/04/19)

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