Quaker Oats is releasing a new name and logo for its “Aunt Jemima” products, finally retiring the racist stereotype that has adorned its pancake mixes and syrups for decades.
The name “Aunt Jemima,” long criticized as a racist caricature of a Black woman stemming from slavery, will be replaced with the Pearl Milling Company name and logo on the former brand’s new packaging, according to parent company PepsiCo.
“We are starting a new day with Pearl Milling Company,” a PepsiCo spokesperson said. “A new day rooted in the brand’s historic beginnings and its mission to create moments that matter at the breakfast table.
“PepsiCo attorneys purchased brand name and logo trademarks for Pearl Milling Company on February 1. Trademark attorney Josh Gerben of Gerben Perrott, PLLC in Washington DC spotted the filing Monday morning.
The former name, Aunt Jemima, recently faced criticism due to its racial stereotyping. The product labels featured a Black woman dressed as a minstrel character. Quaker Oats updated the dress and removed the “mammy” kerchief, but last summer, the company announced it was also planning to remove the image altogether and change the brand’s name after civil unrest led to an outpouring of support of helping to correct racial injustice.
“We recognize Aunt Jemima’s origins are based on a racial stereotype,” Kristin Kroepfl, vice president and chief marketing officer of Quaker Foods North America, said in a statement, according to NBC News.
“As we work to make progress toward racial equality through several initiatives, we also must take a hard look at our portfolio of brands and ensure they reflect our values and meet our consumers’ expectations.”
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