미국의 쌀 브랜드 Uncle Ben's가 Ben'original 이라는 새로운 이름을 갖게 되었습니다. 기존의 Uncle Ben's에 로고에는 흑인 남성의 얼굴이 들어가 있었는데요. 최근 조지 플루이드 사태로 인종주의에 대한 경각심이 높아지면서 로고와 브랜드명을 바꾼 것입니다. Ben'original의 모회사인 Mars는 새로운 브랜드를 통해 포용성과 형평성을 높이기 위한 조치를 취하고, 모든 사람들에게 자리를 제공하는 기회를 만들기 위해 새로운 브랜드 목표를 세울 것이라고 밝혔습니다.
이외에도 Quaker Oats는 6 월에 Jemima 숙모 캐릭터를 시럽과 팬케이크 포장에서 제외 하겠다고 발표했으며, Washington NFL franchise 는 “Redskins”라는 이름과 인디언 헤드 로고를 없애기로 했습니다.
Goodbye to ‘Uncle Ben’: Rice brand to change its name to ‘Ben’s Original’
Quaker Oats announced in June that it would drop its Aunt Jemima character from syrup and pancake packaging, responding to criticism that the character’s origins were based on the “mammy” stereotype, a Black woman content to serve her white masters. Quaker said packages without the Aunt Jemima image would start to appear in stores by the end of the year, although the company has not revealed the new logo.
The owner of Eskimo Pie has also said it would change its name and marketing of the nearly century-old chocolate-covered ice cream bar. Beyond food brands, the Washington NFL franchise dropped the “Redskins” name and Indian head logo amid pressure from sponsors including FedEx, Nike, Pepsi and Bank of America.
Geechie Boy Mill, a family-owned operation in South Carolina that makes locally grown and milled white grits, is also planning a name change. Geechie is a dialect spoken mainly by the descendants of Black slaves who settled on the Ogeechee river in Georgia, according to dictionary website Merriam-Webster.com.
“We are in the process of changing our name and have developed a whole new brand. We look forward to sharing it with the public,” said Greg Johnsman, owner of Geechie Boy Mill.
Mars had announced in the summer that the Uncle Ben’s brand would “evolve.”
Since the 1940s, the rice boxes have featured a white-haired Black man, sometimes in a bow tie, an image critics say evokes servitude. Mars has said the face was originally modeled after a Chicago maitre d’ named Frank Brown. In a short-lived 2007 marketing campaign, the company elevated Uncle Ben to chairman of a rice company.
Dawson said months of conversations with employees, customer studies and other stakeholders led the company to settle on “Ben’s Original.” She said the company is still deciding on an image to accompany the new name.
Mars also announced several other initiatives, including a $2-million investment in culinary scholarships for aspiring Black chefs in partnership with the National Urban League. It also is planning a $2.5-million investment in nutritional and education programs for students in Greenville, Miss., the majority-Black city where the rice brand has been produced for more than 40 years.
Mars said it has set a goal of increasing the number of people of color in its U.S. management positions by 40%. The company did not give a time frame for hitting that target.