Cream of Wheat to review use of chef mascot on packaging
(CNN) – Cream of Wheat has announced a review of its mascot, following other major food brands who announced they would change or review the use of packaging accused of perpetuating racial stereotypes.
B&G Foods, Cream of Wheat’s parent company, said in a statement Wednesday night that it had initiated a review of its packaging, which features the image of a black chef.
The mascot is widely believed to be based on Chicago chef Frank L. White, but scholars say that image replaced the brand’s original black mascot, a racist caricature called Rastus.
B&G Foods’ announcement came after Quaker Oats said earlier Wednesday that it would retire the Aunt Jemima brand, saying it recognized the mascot’s origins were based on a racial stereotype.
Hours later, Uncle Ben’s parent company Mars said it would change Uncle Ben’s “brand identity,” and Mrs. Butterworth’s parent company Conagra said it would conduct a complete brand and packaging review.
The announcements came amid the national and global uproar over the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis.