Aimee Picchi, MSN Money, June 19, 2013
Mix a favorite summer fruit with an iconic American cookie, and what do you get? Apparently a mouthful of controversy.
Mondelez International’s Nabisco has rolled out a limited-edition Oreo flavor for the summer, picking watermelon as its fruit of choice. It’s not even the cookie maker’s first fruit-flavored version, with previous spin-offs including banana split and chocolate with strawberry creme.
Some are saying the new flavor opens up jokes or insults that could veer into racism, given that the fruit is sometimes stereotyped as a favorite of blacks. The portrayal has its roots in American slavery, with defenders portraying slaves as happy as long as they had a slice of watermelon.
“Really Nabisco . . . Watermelon Oreos? Are you TRYING 2 get some low-level intern fired for a racist joke email?” one consumer wrote on Twitter.
Real Oreos lovers, however, will likely skip over the controversy and welcome the new flavor with a cold glass of milk.