Burger King under fire for ‘racist’ advert and apologises for insensitivity

Burger King chopsticks

Burger King has come under criticism for a new advert which shows western people trying to eat a burger with oversized red chopsticks.

The burger chain released an ad for a new Vietnamese burger in New Zealand which was viewed millions of times by people all over the world on the brand’s Instagram account for NZ.

The clip sparked debate as to whether Burger King had caused offence or tried to have a bit of fun.

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As reported by the BBC, a posted to Twitter by Maria Mo, a Korean woman living in New Zealand, has been viewed more than 2.9M times.

In her subsequent thread she berates Burger King’s attempts to make fun of how Asians eat and described the advert as racist.

She tweeted: “I’m so sick of racism of any kind. Of the kind that makes fun of different cultures. Say no to every single manifestation of it.”

In China, the Burger King advert has been viewed more than eight million times on the news website Pear Video and tens of thousands of Weibo users have been posting about it.

The hashtag, which translates as #NewBurgerKingAdvertAllegedlyRacist, has also been used more than 12,000 times.

Some users sided with Burger King however. “Whatever anyone does, it’s discrimination, we’re bursting with persecution and paranoia. What can brands do in the future to introduce Asian elements?” asked one user.

As a result of a fallout, Burger King removed the Instagram clip yesterday and has also withdrawn the follow-up television advert.

A spokesperson told the BBC: “The ad in question is insensitive and does not reflect our brand values regarding diversity and inclusion.”


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Zoe Monk

The author Zoe Monk

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