The Dole Sunshine Company has issued an open letter to His Holiness, Pope Francis, via Italian newspaper La Repubblica, seeking absolution of the apple. Done in honour of International Fruit Day, Dole is asking to redeem the reputation of fruit to celebrate it as the original "healthy" snack instead. According to Dole, La Repubblica is also the only newspaper Pope Francis has stated he reads.
Referencing the story of Adam and Eve from the Bible, Dole said for thousands of years, the apple has faced this vilification after Eve took a bite from the "forbidden fruit" in the Garden of Eden. In a fun but hopefully fruitful manner, DSC is looking to reverse this vilification and has requested Pope Francis to absolve fruit of its misconceived role in Original Sin.
The letter – a humorous and unprecedented plea to the Pontiff – is meant to spark global dialogue around the importance of fruit for a nutritious diet and focus in on fruits' benefits and overall global accessibility.
"The most catastrophic PR disaster that fruit has ever faced: the calamity of Original Sin. As one of the largest fruit providers in the world, we hope to redeem its reputation in the eyes of your 1.2 billion discerning followers. For too long, fruit has been made the scapegoat for humanity’s most heinous crime, from the pulpit to the playground. For too long, fruit has been vilified and demonised; it has been maligned in art and literature, symbolising lust, temptation and depravity, in all its vile and wicked forms. This is a travesty of justice, that only you have the power, wisdom and authority to finally rectify," Dole said in the letter.
Dole added that far from being the source of Original Sin and the root of all evil in the world, Dole prefers to think of fruit as the Original Snack, offering pleasure, nutrition and sustenance to the world at large.
"In an age of more sinful high-cal, low-fibre indulgences, such as doughnuts, nachos, curly fries and other aberrations, we think it’s time to celebrate the humble apple, the noble banana, the majestic kumquat," Dole explained. It also cited how the apple has been a source of creativity and innovation across the centuries, such as how the fall of an apple led to Newton's greatest epiphany and how the banana inspired some of the finest contemporary artists.
"For all these reasons and more, we humbly ask for the absolution that only you can offer. A tiny change that can change the world. Would you consider amending the Bible? Just a tiny word. Replacing ‘fruit’ for any other unhealthy food, for instance? Just an idea. If that request sounds a bit too ambitious, no worries. We get it. Maybe then a message of support would go a long way to restoring the world’s faith in our beloved fruits," Dole said.
Pier Luigi Sigismondi, president of Dole Packaged Foods and Beverages Group, said the company understands that requesting this change is "a bold and provocative ask" and it means no disrespect to His Holiness or The Church.
"We believe if we can resolve this misrepresentation of fruit, we can start a new global narrative that focuses on its benefits, and creates new, healthier eating habits that are consistent with our purpose to bring good nutrition to all," Sigismondi said.
Photo courtesy: Shutterstock
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