JAKARTA (AFP) – A noodle snack with a picture of a bikini-clad woman and the words “squeeze me” on the packaging has triggered outrage in Muslim-majority Indonesia, with consumer groups calling Friday for it to be pulled from shops.
The snack takes its name “Bikini” from an acronym in local slang meaning “trendy rice noodles”.
But the food, which can only be ordered online, sparked anger among conservative sections of society in Indonesia, which has the world’s biggest Muslim population.
Tulus Abadi, executive chairman of the Indonesian Consumers Foundation, said that the name and packaging were “verging on pornography, and therefore it has to be pulled from the market”.
Ridwan Kamil — the mayor of Bandung city on Java island, where the snack is believed to have been produced — also called for the food to be withdrawn from shops as it had “caused uneasiness in society”.
The foundation, which managed to order some of the snacks earlier this week, said the maker had forged the “halal” label on the packaging. Such labelling is used on foods that are produced in line with Islamic law.
Indonesia’s official Food and Drugs Monitoring Agency and local authorities are searching for the manufacturer of the snack in Bandung but have so far been unsuccessful after a three-day hunt.