Aunt Jemima Gets Canceled; Brand to Change Name Due to "Racist Stereotype"

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The world's most popular brand of syrup is about to get a facelift.

Literally.

Aunt Jemima

On Wednesday, Quaker Oats announced that the Aunt Jemima brand of syrup and pancake mix will get a new name and image because the company recognizes that "Aunt Jemima's origins are based on a racial stereotype."

The 130-year-old brand features a Black woman named Aunt Jemima, who was originally dressed as a minstrel character.

"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," the Pepsi-owned company said in a statement.

Aunt Jemima's appearance has evolved over time.

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However, the origin of the logo is based off the song "Old Aunt Jemima," which comes from a minstrel show performer and which was reportedly sung by slaves.

Yikes, right?

The company's website has said that the logo began in 1890 and was based on Nancy Green, a "storyteller, cook and missionary worker."

But the website failed to mention Green was born into slavery.

aunt j pancakes

Kristin Kroepfl, vice president and chief marketing officer of Quaker Foods North America, said the company has worked over the years to "update" the brand to be "appropriate and respectful."

At this point, though, it realized the changes were insufficient.

This realization has come amid an outbreak of demonstrations around the country in support of racial justice and much-needed police reform.

In the wake of George Floyd being killed by a white police officer in Minnesota, these protests and the Black Lives Matter movement have resulted in nearly every industry taking a serious look in the mirror.

old aunt j

Entertainment wise, for example?

Numerous reality stars, such as Stassi Schroeder and Alex Kompothecras, have been fired by Bravo and MTV, respectively, due to inappropriate behavior, messages and Tweets from their pasts.

In this case, NBC News was the first to report on the Aunt Jemima name and logo change.

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There have been numerous calls for the company to change the logo over the yearrs.

In a 2015 opinion piece published in the New York Times, Cornell University professor Riché Richardson said the logo is "very much linked to Southern racism."

She added that Aunt Jemima is based on a "'mammy,' a devoted and submissive servant who eagerly nurtured the children of her white master and mistress while neglecting her own."

Of late, calls for this change have only been amplified on social media.

aunt tik tok

Pepsi hasn't yet revealed a new logo or brand name for the breakfast items, but says both will debut in the fall.

Aunt Jemima brand will also donate $5 million over the next five years to "create meaningful, ongoing support and engagement in the Black community."

Earlier this week, Pepsi announced a $400 million set of initiatives to support the black community.

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