Following the social media backlash over Walmart’s Juneteenth ice cream, the retail corporation has decided to pull the “celebration edition” treat from its stores.
In a statement to Fox, the company responded to the criticism and issued an apology.
“Juneteenth holiday marks a celebration of freedom and independence,” the statement reads, as shared by Newsweek. “However, we received feedback that a few items caused concern for some of our customers and we sincerely apologize. We are reviewing our assortment and will remove items as appropriate.”
The decision comes after comments flooded the internet over the weekend when a picture surfaced of the newly introduced swirled red velvet and cheesecake-flavored ice cream and its branding of red, green, yellow and black coloring — colors associated with Pan-African ideology.
As previously reported, many Twitter users commented on Walmart’s decision to include the trademark symbol, placed directly next to the word Juneteenth. Others pointed out alternate ice cream brands to purchase, such as Creamalicious, the Black-owned company launched by chef Liz Rogers.
Sharing a side-by-side collage of both the Walmart and Creamalicious ice cream, one user said, “If you’re at Walmart and you’re thinking about buying the one on the left. Take a few seconds to look for and buy the one on the right. They are the same flavor except Creamalicious Ice Creams is black owned.”
Highlighting the incident some refer to as another example of white-on-Black capitalism, one user wrote, “For those who don’t get the outrage behind the #Juneteenthice cream: A White-owned company named @Walmart is trying to trademark Juneteenth.”
Juneteenth is a federal holiday celebrated annually on June 17 in observance of the news of freedom for enslaved Black people in America.
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