Trader Joe’s Responds to Criticism Over Branding: 'We Disagree That Any of These Labels Are Racist'
In response to the updated statement, California high school senior Briones Bedell, who created the online petition, has called on the grocery chain to clarify what actions they will be taking.
“The latest statement is a departure from the company’s commitment to removing products that they have recognized have not been inclusive or conducive to creating a welcoming, rewarding customer experience,” Bedell wrote. “Further, this recent statement adds confusion as to how – and whether – Trader Joe’s will proceed with the repackaging of their ethnic foods.”
Trader Joe's did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for further comment.
In recent months, a number of other companies have moved to rebrand their food products amid global protests over systemic racism.
Quaker Oats previously announced that it was retiring its Aunt Jemima brand and logo, acknowledging that it was “based on a racial stereotype," with Mrs. Butterworth and Uncle Ben's sharing similar sentiments.
To help combat systemic racism, consider learning from or donating to these organizations:
• Campaign Zero (joincampaignzero.org) which works to end police brutality in America through research-proven strategies.
• ColorofChange.org works to make government more responsive to racial disparities.
• National Cares Mentoring Movement (caresmentoring.org) provides social and academic support to help Black youth succeed in college and beyond.
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