“Can the world get a grip now please?”
A British supermarket chain has apologized for labeling a dark-chocolate duckling “Ugly” after outcry from customers.
Waitrose said it pulled the offending Easter candy from its shelves after “a small number” of people complained that they were offended. The “Ugly” duckling was packaged alongside two compatriots: “Crispy” and “Fluffy.”
The labeling of the darkest duckling as the unattractive one was seen by some as racist.
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One woman tweeted Sunday that she had overhead another woman in the store comment that “this is not right.” The Twitter user said she agreed, plaintively asking, “why #ugly?”
Crispy, Fluffy and Ugly – trio of Easter ducklings at #waitrose . Ugly is the dark one on the right. Overheard women saying “this is not right” , I agree, doesn’t look good at all. Thousands of other options… why #ugly????? pic.twitter.com/bw5iFCcPuz
— livia a. aliberti (@livia_aliberti) March 7, 2019
Another woman agreed.
I dunno why racist is in inverted commas, surely Waitrose knew that people would be offended by this? https://t.co/uep5ST872I
— Aliyah (@4liyah) April 8, 2019
A Waitrose spokesperson responded: “We are sorry for any upset caused by the name of this product, it was absolutely not our intention to cause any offence. We removed the product from sale several weeks ago while we changed the labelling and our ducklings are now back on sale.”
The new packaging of the three-duckling set – which includes white, milk and dark chocolate options and sells for $9 – avoids naming the waterfowl at all.
But a number of observers panned the supermarket for caving to what they characterized as absurd demands. One woman user wondered where some people find the time for such boutique outrage.
Lol.. Waitrose removing Easter duck named 'ugly' because its racist ??♀️? who has the time or inclination to think to complain about this stuff? ???
— S-Hannah (@sineadhannah6) April 8, 2019
“Political correctness gone mad… Yet again,” another commenter said.
“Can the world get a grip now please?” someone else asked.
Others noted that the dark-chocolate duckling was apparently named for the hero of Hans Christian Andersen’s beloved fairytale, “The Ugly Duckling.” The 1884 story centers on a dark-colored bird who is mistaken for a duck and endures a childhood of abuse before maturing into a beautiful swan.
An apparently ascendant “callout culture” has recently targeted a number of other holiday traditions, including the classic Christmas songs “Santa Baby” and “Baby, It’s Cold Outside,” both of which feminists deemed sexist.
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- Twitter user Aliyah/An “Ugly” chocolate duckling.: Twitter