By: V4 Agency
After several big brands boasting decades-long traditions were labelled racist last year, their owners decided to rename them. However, not eveyone is pleased with the changes.
The Black Lives Matter movement has labelled a slew of brands racist last year, including some belonging to food companies, even despite their decades-long history and traditions.
In June last year Quaker Oats, an affiliate of Pepsi, announced that it would not only recall but rename one of its most popular product lines. The Aunt Jemima pancake powder and syrup brand was problematic because its logo featured a black woman, albeit for some 130 years. Many considered the character to be a racial stereotype, which led to the rebranding of these products.
The company recently revealed the long-awaited new name and logo to replace Quaker Oats’ Aunt Jemima brand, saying products will be sold under the name Pearl Milling Company, in a nod to the original firm that developed the roots of the product line. Reactions to the new name, however, were mixed, with some calling it “boring and strange.”
In a bid to go woke, Quaker Oats wants to combat racism, but not just by scrapping its Aunt Jemima brand name. Last year, the company offered 5 million dollars to support the black community while this year, Pearl Milling Company will commit one million dollars to empower black girls and women. In addition, Pepsi Co will invest more than 400 million dollars to advance black businesses and engage as many of them as possible.
Just like Aunt Jemima, the Australian Coon Cheese brand name also “hit a snag” last year, after an aboriginal Australian activist pointed out in his complaint that historically, the word “coon” is a racial slur that was used against black people. As a result of his complaint, the owners decided to drop the name, even though the original brand name was a tribute to the company’s founder.
Others have also been campaigning for a name change and now their efforts seem to have paid off. The product will be rebranded and simply called Cheer, a name that “has the significance of pleasure and joy,” the company’s chief executive said in a statement.