Aunt Jemima brand will no longer be used, says owner

Asparagus Roll-Ups? I’m interested 'cause over here it’s actually asparagus season and that’s a pretty big thing.

We don’t have Aunt Jemima here but Uncle Ben’s - looks like a similar problem:



They might double down and use “Washington Redskins Syrup”


And the move was rightfully criticized by the Black community as merely performative back then.

Getting rid of the brand all together is long overdue.


Always found the Aunt Jemima brand distasteful despite my personal thoughts on premade pancake mixes and fake pancake syrup. Glad they’re getting rid of the brand finally, it’s always been antiquated and racist despite their best attempts.

I’m also finding that the Uncle Ben brand is being changed as well


Ignorance of racist [eta: grammar] symbolism doesn’t mean it’s not racist. Plenty of white people do not see our system of policing as racist, yet it is.


24 posts were split to a new topic: Remove the Quaker in the Oats now


Aunt Jemima already had her street in Winnipeg renamed.

Of course, that Aunt is my great, great grandmother’s sister Jemima, Their mother was Syilx.

I’m torn about the pancake brand. Yes, it’s based on a stereotype, but the photo has been updated. Hence it’s one of the few times we see a non-white person on a product (and I gather Uncle Ben’s may be disappearing too).

Symbols are easy to change, real change is harder. Will things be dissipated by going after symbols and statues, leaving the real work undone?

A lot of white people haven’t given any of this much thought until a few weeks ago. I’m way more interested in boosting things long invisible than erasing things but that’s just me.

Suddenly people want to erase Gandhi. He always had his “quirks”, I read about some of them forty years ago. But kids miss that he was probably a catalyst for change in other countries. And he was a major practitioner of nonviolence, WWII pacifists built on his work and in turn pased it on to the civil rights movement. Bayard Rustin did time in WWII, and went to India afterwards to work with Gandhi (except Gandhi was assassinated before he got there). Bayard was black. He’s been resurrected in recent years, in part as a gay man. He was hidden in part because of that. But his pacifism seems missing tgese days.

Even the ANC in South Africa was influenced by Gandhi, until they went to bombs.

So things aren’t binary, and it seems a shame to act suddenly rather than with care. At least around symbols, I want a world where I don’t worry when I see a police car.


I’m honestly surprised it’s taken this long. The make-overs never did the trick of fixing the core issue here.


Here is one well known food logo/branding that overall works better for me:

It has something more to say as it references the culture and people of an area. Aunt Jemima and Uncle Ben painted themselves into a corner by placing their branding in a extremely specific image/idea of a black person coupled with a name that has racist connotations/history.


Uncle Jemima’s Pure Mash Liquor.
“You probably know my wife, the pancake lady.”


According to the Uncle Ben’s website, the name was first used in 1946 in reference to a black farmer known as Uncle Ben who excelled in rice-growing. The man depicted in the logo is a “a beloved Chicago chef and waiter named Frank Brown.”

However, the imagery evokes a servant and uses a title that reflects how white Southerners “once used ‘uncle’ and ‘aunt’ as honorifics for older blacks because they refused to say ‘Mr.’ and ‘Mrs.,’” according to a 2007 New York Times article.

Ugh. Yeah, that ruins the imagery.


If they want to pay homage to black farmers or well known black figures (ie: a chef) they need to actually try. The Uncle Ben brand is really lazy, especially considering that the person that inspired the logo has absolutely nothing to do with the purported rice farmer beyond the color of their skin.


Unless the actual POINT of the imagery was to comfort whites participating in a system of racism and oppression in the first place. Which it was?

But the homage wasn’t TO African Americans, it was to white supremacy.


Totally; Uncle Ben, Aunt Jemima, Mammy, Sambo etc are all fictional “Happy Darkies” archetypes who ‘didn’t mind’ their oppression and exploitation.


Re-post of one lady’s message:


Right? And African Americans weren’t considered to be consumers in the American system until relatively recently, only whites were…

the post is not about Quakers. It’s about racist symbols. If you want to talk about that, you’re welcome to start another thread on it. I’m sure many people would be happy to discuss the history of the Quakers with you, as it’s an interesting topic…

And you can’t “appeal” here and I’m not a moderator…


Most people under 30 are surprisingly informed and concerned about such things.

It’s a major reason why brands are finally starting to move away from this stuff. The generational shift on these topics makes it look like you got an awful short runway if you don’t.


My point is that I’d love to see a brand that celebrated African American culture and people but it has to be earnest, not some caricature. However i’m pessimistic about a giant conglomerate doing so because it wouldn’t be earnest, should be something that comes naturally out a community/region.


Fucking on point with some history!

I think the way to do that without being offensive is probably for white people NOT to do it. If there is a white owned company, and they want to celebrate black culture and heritage, maybe instead of just throwing some branding at it, they should… hire more people of color, especially to C-level jobs?

That’s just the truth on any level. :woman_shrugging: They care about making a profit, not about fixing social problems. If the social problems benefit them they’ll just double down. If it becomes a liability, they’ll abandon ship. I don’t know… maybe asking for earnest global corporations is… impossible?