The ‘Uncle Ben’ Rice Brand Was Based On Two People Who Never Even Worked For The Company
- Mars has announced it is time for the Uncle Ben brand to “evolve.”
- The brand is reportedly named for a Houston rice farmer, who never had any involvement with the company.
- The image of Uncle Ben itself is based on that of a hotel employee.
Uncle Ben’s rice has officially changed its name and logo. The brand, which has been criticized for perpetuating racial stereotypes, will now be known as Ben’s Original, the company announced on Wednesday.
The company’s packaging has also removed the portrait of a Black man from its logo. It’s worth noting that the brand’s Instagram handle @unclebensusa and Twitter handle @UncleBens have not been changed, despite the announcement being distributed on both social media platforms.
“Over the last several weeks, we have listened to thousands of consumers, our own Associates and other stakeholders from around the world,” Fiona Dawson, Global President Mars Food, Multisales, and Global Customers, said in a press release. “We understand the inequities that were associated with the name and face of the previous brand, and as we announced in June, we have committed to change.”
The brand also wants to created a “more equitable iconography,” the press release says. “The brand is not just changing its name and image on the package,” it says. “It is also taking action to enhance inclusion and equity and setting out its new brand purpose to create opportunities that offer everyone a seat at the table.”
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