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Coon Cheese Is Changing Its Name After 85 Years Due To Racism Links

Coon Cheese Is Changing Its Name After 85 Years Due To Racism Links

The iconic Coon Cheese brand has its days numbered.

At the height of the Black Lives Matter movement in Australia, many pointed out that the word is incredibly racist and problematic. People on the other side of the argument hit back saying the word has nothing to do why the cheese was called was it is today.

The brand is named after American creator Edward William Coon, who patented a method for the fast maturation of cheese through high temperature and humidity, which has subsequently been dubbed Cooning.

However, it seems like the calls from Australia to switch up the name have reached Coon Cheese's parent company in Canada.

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Credit: Coon Cheese
Credit: Coon Cheese

Saputo has responded to the request to change the name, releasing a statement that will be changing things from now on.

In a statement, CEO Lino Saputo Jr said: "We performed a careful and diligent review of this sensitive situation," Mr Saputo Jr said.

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"We wanted to ensure we listened to all the concerns surrounding the COON brand name, while also considering comments from consumers who cherish the brand and recognise the origin of its founder Edward William Coon, which they feel connected to.

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"After thorough consideration, Saputo has decided to retire the COON brand name. As part of this process of transformation, we commit to keep our stakeholders informed as we move forward.

"At this time, we are working to develop a new brand name that will honour the brand affinity felt by our valued consumers while aligning with current attitudes and perspectives."

Indigenous activist and author Stephen Hagan has been leading the campaign to have the name changed; arguing that while the word doesn't specifically relate to people of colour in this context, it's still disheartening to see the word plastered on products.

A correspondence between Hagan and Saputo has been published by News Corp, which said: "People of colour, especially First Nations people in Australia, are offended by that brand name in use in this country since November 1935, as it is a celebrated term used by our oppressors - many of which are found in government, corporate and civic leader ranks - to demean and subjugating us as a race."

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It's not the first place to alter or change up its branding in the wake of the Black Lives Matter movement, with lollies and even some beer companies switching things up to ensure their name doesn't offend anyone.

Featured Image Credit: Coon Cheese

Topics: Food, News, Australia

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Stewart Perrie

Stewart Perrie is a Trending Journalist at LADbible. His first job was as a newsreader and journalist at the award winning Sydney radio station, Macquarie Radio. He was solely responsible for the content broadcast on multiple stations across Australia when the MH17, Germanwings and AirAsia disasters unfolded. Stewart has covered the conflict in Syria for LADbible, interviewing a doctor on the front line, and has contributed to the hugely successful UOKM8 campaign.