Cream of Wheat became the fourth major food marketer to announce a review of its brand imagery on Wednesday, saying it understands there are concerns regarding the image of a Black chef that has appeared on its packaging for decades.
“B&G Foods, Inc. today announced that we are initiating an immediate review of the Cream of Wheat brand packaging,” Cream of Wheat’s parent company said in a statement. “We understand there are concerns regarding the Chef image, and we are committed to evaluating our packaging and will proactively take steps to ensure that we and our brands do not inadvertently contribute to systemic racism. B&G Foods unequivocally stands against prejudice and injustice of any kind.”
Cream of Wheat was introduced in 1893 and has long been marketed using a Black chef character. In the early 1900s, ads showed the chef to be named Rastus, though the name does not appear to have been used more recently. B&G Foods bought the Cream of Wheat and Cream of Rice brands from Kraft Foods in 2007.