Economy, Domestic Economy

Smuggled Gum Causes Controversy

Smuggled Gum Causes ControversySmuggled Gum Causes Controversy

Trident, an American brand for chewing gum, has caused controversy in Iran after latest data found the gum contains sugar alcohol.Around $1.5 million of gums have so far been imported into Iran this year, while the figure reached $2.7 million last year. Most of the chewing gum often sold at roadside kiosks and supermarkets is imported from Turkey, the UAE, Poland and Switzerland. Many top Iranian clerics have issued statements on using foods containing sugar alcohols, with regards to Islamic Sharia law. Most of these senior religious figures say that because of their low alcohol content and non-intoxicating nature, no harm will come from using them; however, they do mention that it is better to avoid them if people have concerns. Sugar alcohol is a kind of alcohol prepared from sugar and used widely in the food industry as thickeners and sweeteners, substituting table sugar.  According to US Food and Drug Administration Organization sugar alcohols do not contribute to tooth decay. Also, Iran’s Dental Information Institute announced that sugar alcohol is just a name and the substance lacks any real alcohol.