British supermarket Waitrose faced a backlash after releasing a trio of chocolate ducklings, one of which was accused of being racist.
The three ducklings are white chocolate, milk chocolate and dark chocolate, with some having reacted with outrage to the fact that while the first two are named “fluffy” and “crispy”, the dark chocolate one was named the “ugly” duckling.
The backlash was sufficient for the supermarket chain to pull the duckling chocs from the shelf, changing the labelling before re-releasing the ducklings, along with a statement apology.
“We are very 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 statement reads.
While the ducklings were considered racist by some on social media, others disagreed, with many of the comments since the pulling of the product seeing the outcry and the supermarket’s reaction as a case of outrage culture and political correctness going too far.
Many have pointed out that the “ugly duckling” reference was apparently an innocent reference to a fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen, although some have said that while they acknowledge this, there is no reference to the colour of the “ugly duckling” and that Waitrose shouldn’t have made it the dark one.
Since the pulling of the product, however, most on social media appear to be arguing that the issue has caused unnecessary outrage.
Here are some tweets from both those arguing that the chocs were racist and those arguing that the outrage over them is ridiculous.
What brand of faulty thinking leads one to shout racism without even stopping to realize the intended joke was "Ugly Duckling"?
— ???? Lieutenant Tofu (@Lieutenant_Tofu) April 15, 2019
Shame on @waitrose for questionable marketing practises and reinforcing the “ugly black duckling” narrative. INSIDIOUS casual racism that vilifies dark hues #shame #Waitrose #racism. An exposè a lack of diversity among your decision making staff. Stuck in the 60s! @hopenothate pic.twitter.com/u17S5i8MeN
— Stefania Ranieri (@KetoStef) April 9, 2019
There once was an ugly duckling with feathers all stubby and brown,starts the Danny Kaye song,turns out to be a swan!often heard as a kid,has the Nation gone PC crazy?Do these SJWs have nothing better to do? https://t.co/GOZKmoHPqq
— Pete Blanco (@PeteBlanco3) April 14, 2019
“It’s not funny if you feel like the ugly duckling”. My take on the @waitrose “racist duckling” row in today’s @dailymirror. Let me know what you think.https://t.co/efqmffwBeI pic.twitter.com/Gsz4iKOi9f
— Eva Akase Simpson (@EvaMSimpson) April 11, 2019
Waitrose have pulled that ugly duckling chocolate from the stores. Everyday pulling the race card….. for chocolate. Outrage galore
There are bigger issues for us to fight
— Oih!!!! Big Man (@blaktruth25) April 13, 2019
Only you see an ugly black duckling. The rest of us normal people see three different but wonderful types of chocolate. You are the racist. What normal thinking person believes dark chocolate is racist ? Please stop talking.
— Sonya Owen (@82_owen18) April 13, 2019
It was a bit cretinous of Waitrose to call the dark one ugly though wasn’t it? Obviously they had in mind the song about the ugly duckling but even in the old days when that song was written I don’t remember any suggestion that the ugly one was a dark one.
— 40.1%Londoner (@100pcLondoner) April 11, 2019