Uncle Ben’s Reveals New Name
Written by Rika C on September 24, 2020
After much racial criticism of its logo, Uncle Ben’s is now revealing its new name and branding. Along with scholarships intended for aspiring Black chefs, parent company Mars Inc. has dropped the “stereotypical” logo and has changed the brand’s name to Ben’s Original. While Uncle Ben’s has been a staple in boxed rice since the 1940s, it’s controversial logo, featuring a white-haired Black man, sometimes with a bowtie, has stirred much backlash in recent times amid the Black Lives Matter movement and racial equality protests, as critics noted how the image evokes servitude. Although the private company is still working on an appropriate image to couple with the new name, Mars says the rebranded packaging will hit shelves in 2021. Uncle Ben’s joins the likes of Cream of Wheat, Aunt Jemima, Mrs. Butterworth’s, Eskimo Pie, and more brands who’ve been criticized and have retired their racial logos. Mars has announced that they will also partner with the National Urban League and donate $2 million to a scholarship fund for aspiring Black chefs. An additional $2.5 million will go to educational programs and food access efforts within the community of Greenville, Mississippi — where the products have been manufactured for four decades.