Premier Is, the Denmark-based ice-cream supplier, is to no longer use the word eskimo on its products.
Eight months after saying it would look again at its Kaempe Eskimo brand name after facing criticism, the company, owned by Latvia-based ice-cream group Food Union, has come up with a new moniker for the product.
Kaempe Eskimo is being renamed as Giant Blackcurrant, a change Premier Is said has also taken place in connection with moving the product to its namesake brand from a second brand, Gammeldags.
Claus Dahlmann Larsen, CCO of Premier Is, said talks with non-profit groups including The Nalik Association, which seeks to promote equality for Inuit, had “made an impression and created a much greater understanding of the topic”.
He added: “We have done exactly as we said this summer, namely to get things examined thoroughly before we decided on the direction of the long run, so this, along with the plans to change the name of our brand, including design, then things fit really well together. It has not been a spontaneous decision, but a decision driven by various factors.”
Last summer, as consumer brands looked again at brand names amid concerns of racial stereotyping, Premier Is described the use of the word eskimo in the context of ice cream as “a folklorised category description” but said it would review the continued use of the name.
“We believe that the name ‘eskimo’, which dates back more than 100 years, has now transformed into a folklorised category description that is widely accepted in the industry and among consumers for one particular type of ice cream – ice cream on a stick covered in chocolate glaze. To the best of our knowledge we cannot identify any derogatory meaning that could be associated with the usage of the name of ‘eskimo’ on Premier Is’s product,” the company told just-food at the time. “However, given the context, we will take the opportunity and review the matter in greater detail.”