Juneteenth is a federal holiday observed in America to commemorate the emancipation of Black people. While many Black families may be gearing up to celebrate by hosting barbecues or cookouts next month, one thing that may — or may not — be on grocery store lists is Walmart’s new Great Value brand Juneteenth ice cream.
When a picture surfaced over the weekend of the “Celebration Edition” swirled red velvet and cheesecake-flavored ice cream, Twitter users were not shy at expressing their disdain.
Like that of Black dances, music and vernacular, many say the ice cream serves as yet another example of white commodities attempting to benefit from Black culture. Some noted the company’s addition of the small trademark symbol (TM), placed directly next to the word Juneteenth, written in red and surrounded by green, black and yellow-colored branding.
“The gentrification of Juneteenth is on the way brough[t] to you by @Walmart,” one user said. “I’m also looking at the little ™ symbol next to Juneteenth with so many questions sigh. Do you not have any trademark attorneys who advised against this? Or do y’all just not care?”
“For those who don’t get the outrage behind the #Juneteenth ice cream: A White-owned company named @Walmart is trying to trademark Juneteenth,” another said.
One user, “a Black Texan,” suggested simply not to buy the frozen snack while others pointed to an alternate, Black-owned ice cream brand, Creamalicious.
“Instead of getting that Juneteenth ice cream from Walmart get this instead!!,” the user said, sharing a picture of the Creamalicious red velvet cheesecake treat. “Black owned and it’s good.”
Those who take issue with the product say it’s not just about ice cream, it’s about the possibility that a massive corporation like Walmart may profit off the holiday intended to honor Black people’s decades-long fight for equality in America.
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