One of Heinz Egypt’s managing directors was reportedly arrested on Monday, following a broadcasted investigative report which claimed Heinz had been using rotten tomatoes to manufacture its products, the state-owned newspaper Al-Ahram reported.
The arrest occurred after police had raided a Heinz-affiliated factory in 6th of October City and seized two tonnes of tomato sauce. Al-Ahram said the sauce the police seized had been expired and deemed unfit for consumption.
Al-Ahram did not mention the name of the managing director.
At the time of print, repeated attempts to contact the Ministry of Interior for verification of the seizure and arrest yielded no response.
Daily News Egypt contacted Heinz in an attempt to verify the arrest of the managing director; however, they said that no official was present to comment on the arrest.
The investigative report which preceded the seizure and arrest first aired on Thursday on the investigative programme Entebah (which translates to attention). Entebah is broadcast by the privately-run Al-Mehwar channel.
During the programme, the anchor Mona Erakai showed a video which circulated on various social media outlets that purported to show rotten tomatoes being used to produce Ketchup. The programme alleged that the products depicted were being used in a Heinz factory.
On Monday, Heinz Egypt released a statement in which it denied the footage was shot at a Heinz-affiliated factory.
“The safety and quality of our food [products] are always our first priority, we are aware of a recent TV programme and following social media posts making unfounded allegations about the Heinz Tomato Concentrate manufacturing facility in Egypt,” the statement read.
Moreover, it stressed that the scenes and pictures that circulated, whether in the broadcasted programme or social media outlets, are not related to Heinz factories in Egypt and do not represent the exacting quality standards followed during their production process.
The statement made no mention of the arrest of one of their managing directors.