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haribo19n-3-webGerman candy maker, Haribo, has decided to pull “racist” candies from their shelves after receiving customer complaints in Sweden.  Haribo’s “Skipper Mix” is a black licorice candy that is shaped like ethnic masks or faces resembling those found in African, Asian, or Native American art.

“I understand the criticism and think it’s important to listen to the customers,” said the company’s director, Ola Dagliden, reported The Local, citing Swedish website Nyheter24. The designs which have been accused of being racist were meant to represent a sailor’s trip around the world and some of the people he encountered.

Dagliden also went on to say that the company didn’t intend to offend people. “It wasn’t something we saw as having negative connotations,” he said.

The product will still be sold but without the offending items, reported The Local.

 

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  • laone

    I agree BeanBean.

  • Apple

    . “The designs which have been accused of being racist were meant to represent a sailor’s trip around the world and some of the people he encountered.”

    Do you mean collecting the people around the world he has raped , tortured,enslaved or colonialized??

  • While the word racist may be… ummmm… used too frequently as of late, I do find these candies a weee problematic given Germany’s colonial history in Africa and the present climate around blackness in Europe.

    Since I am black and not Asian I won’t get into the Asian faces, but that those are most likely pretty offensive too.

    If there are little white candies in the shapes and forms of German cultural and historical artifacts I will gladly stand down.. but….I find this candy problematic, troublesome and worthy of a finger wag… or two..

    However I agree with the sentiment that it would be wise for us black folk be mindful about what we get mad about. It’s not even Feb and I am on overload already :/

    • BeanBean

      I’ve eating German candies that are based on historical/ cultural figures before. I never thought I was somehow being offensive by eating them. What I wish we would start to get over is using the term ‘African candy.’ Are these candies representative of all of Africa or just one or two countries? We cant ask others to change their view of Africa if we as blacks dont do it first.

    • Bean Bean, your comment about Africa is fair. Good point. Africa is wildly diverse and it’s people deserve the respect of being recognized properly. To be honest, I don’t know what cultures or tribes the masks represent, so I don’t feel comfortable naming folks.

      However I do know that Germany had colonies in what is presently Namibia, Kenya, Mozambique Cameroon and Togo…Germany has a super nasty history in SW Africa.
      There was a holocaust in SW Africa before there was ever one in Europe..down to the concentration camps.

      Even though Germany may have a history of historical/cultural based candies, I still find it problematic to produce a consumable item that brings to mind the cultures Germany decimated about a century ago.

      I won’t even get into the symbolism of buying the heads of POC in a European country to snack on as a treat.. This candy may seem trivial, but it speaks volumes.

  • Farida

    Well, that’s Germany for you. Great country otherwise but they can be very racially insensitive. Of course, not every single German….

    Do you that they have cookies called NEGGERKÜSS? It means Nigger Kiss. Go figure.

    • Anthony

      No, negern is German for negro or black.

    • Farida

      Actually Schwartz is the German word for Black/People of African descent. Neger has a pejorative connotation. When they use it they mean Nigger just like in English.

      That being said, I don’t know if Haribo had racist intentions or not.

    • Anthony

      I am not fluent in German, but I did study it for translation. Schwartz literally means the color black although it can refer to black people. Negern does translate as Negro.

  • I am not offended by this at ALL. I actually think the candies are pretty cool and thoughtful. Let’s be more concerned about Richard Sherman being called a “thug” and the N-word for a passionate display of competition, as opposed to some chocolate candies with cool faces. This is NOT racist. And let the record show that I am HIGHLY sensitive to most matters regarding race.

    • I agree that this is not racist; there is nothing demeaning about the images and certainly the attempt to acknowledge different cultures is admirable. I know my grand kids would think these are cool stuff, as does their grandma who bakes Darth Vader cookies.