Burger King in New Zealand is the target of criticism for an Instagram ad campaign pitching its Vietnamese Sweet Chilli Tendercrisp burger that shows people struggling to eat a hamburger with oversized chopsticks.
Korean New Zealander, Maria Mo, first posted the video ad on Twitter Thursday calling out Burger King with seemingly sarcastic commentary before going on to call it “orientalism.”
So this is the new Burger King ad for a “Vietnamese” burger ok coolcoolcoolcoolcool CHOPSTICKS R HILARIOUS right omg etc ?????? pic.twitter.com/zVD8CN04Wc
— a little mo (@mariahmocarey) April 4, 2019
It has since been retweeted over three thousand times and drawn over 500 comments. A TechCrunch reporter based in Taiwan, Catherine Shu, retweeted Mo’s tweet to her followers asking “Who the hell came up with this?”
LOL chopsticks amirite??????
Who the hell came up with this? There are a lot of Asian people in NZ, though they probably aren’t getting their Vietnamese food from Burger King ? https://t.co/XSGYX7IVBR
— Catherine Shu ? (@CatherineShu) April 5, 2019
The Huffington Post picked up on the story and interviewed Mo, who told them that she decided to post the video because she was shocked to see it in the first place.
“Because I couldn’t believe such blatantly ignorant ads are still happening in 2019, it honestly took me a second to work out what the heck I was looking at,” Mo told HuffPost in a message.
“[People of color] are constantly having to deal with microaggressions as well as outright hatred and it just never ends,” she added.
Yesterday Mo tweeted how Burger King’s racism is part of a larger problem and that she is sick of racism “Of any kind,” before apparently referencing the mosque shootings in New Zealand.
“I’m so sick of racism. Of any kind. Of the kind that makes fun of different cultures, to the kind that shoots and murders those peacefully praying in their place of worship. Say no to every single manifestation of it.”
Burger King has as yet responded to the controversy.
This is not the first time brands have been charged with being culturally insensitive for their portrayal of chopsticks in s marketing campaign.
In November, Dolce & Gabbana apologized after receiving international backlash over a series of ads showing an Asian struggling to use chopsticks to eat pizza and other Italian foods as part of a campaign.