Oh My Dear Maggi!
So, after more than 30 years of strong friendship with India, the ‘Bas Do Minute’ saga is crashing down! Isn’t it sad for the entire nation who has actually grown enjoying and slurping their favourite snack for ages! Yes, it is. For all that I know, this is errr.. I mean was the only one food item which was common across varied Indian cuisines; this basically bridged the gap between several cultures of a diversified country like India. And, you are now laying there in your Nestle factories, units and outlets to be destroyed! More than you, WE your fellow loyal customers are feeling sorry about the whole fiasco!
My first cooked meal was you! My first experiment in kitchen was you and my first food ‘amusement’ was you! I was a toddler when I starting enjoying you. I have a vague memory of my childhood days when your popularity was increasing in a rapid pace. There was only one ‘original masala’ flavour available in markets and the grocery list was never complete without Maggi packets. Not that my mom is a lazy mother or I was a finicky child, but during those times (early 1990s), this was the only ‘novel’ and ‘readymade’ food item available.
My partner in all crimes, my younger sister then joined my Maggi Team! No matter what the occasion be, the joy of having you in our food plates was delightful. A lazy Sunday evening or a rainy day! Watching a good movie on DD or enjoying our vacations! A quick midnight snack or a hurried meal! You were always there with you and we found you everywhere! Even when we were exhausted while exploring remote places in Uttar Pradesh, you brought a smile back when we saw you at a small eatery. I haven’t been in hostel, but I was quite surprised to see when the teenagers relished you in Pune and Bangalore, be it their PG house or a city mall. And not just in India, I was overwhelmed when I saw you in all the Indian Asian shops in UK! From Vizag to Varanasi! From London to Ludhiana! From Coimbatore to Kashmir! You were always adorned by a huge chunk of people, varying from toddlers, collegians to corporate and honestly everyone!
Forever, you were the most pocket friendly quick nosh. Though the different flavours you came wrapped in didn’t get popular, but trying at least once was essential! And even if we loved your original masala flavour, we loved to experiment with our unique way. You made my menu little innovative and interesting – adding Chinese sauces or tossing a dash of Italian herbs or blending a desi twist – Maggi Samosa, pakodas and many others! Oh My God! For Indians who usually eat with hands, you were the first one to teach me (at least for me) to eat with a fork!
Oh, the experiences and odysseys are endless! And now I feel so bad that you are not here with us. If the reports have some mass, we were consuming excess lead and MSG for several years! You would be flooded with huge amount of letters these days’; a few complaints, a few consolations and a few queries. Well, I just have one question for you. Why? Why did you cheat your most loyal customers? Why did you deceive that nation which acknowledge you with open arms? Why were you harming those kids who were your main audience and revenue churners? Those yellow curly saucy thin threads are going to be missed!
At present, you, me and everyone is perplexed because of the noodle disaster and we are patiently waiting for your next substantial move. Will you discontinue your products in India? Will you revamp your productions and come with a ‘really’ healthy product? Or will you fight and declare that the current production is safe to eat?
We are waiting!
From your forever loyal patron!