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Mars Brands announced this afternoon that the brand known as Uncle Ben's Rice products will be undergoing a name change. The new name that consumers will have to know going into stores will be Ben's Original. The packaging will still maintain the same orange color with blue lettering, but will no longer have the likeness of an African American on the front of the box.

 In a press release this afternoon;

“Over the last several weeks, we have listened to thousands of consumers, our own Associates and other stakeholders from around the world,” said Fiona Dawson, Global President Mars Food, Multisales and Global Customers. “We understand the inequities that were associated with the name and face of the previous brand, and as we announced in June, we have committed to change.”

The name change, which was announced back in June was vague on what the product would be called in future. The release went on to state:

The company has also committed to removing the image on the packaging to create more equitable iconography. The brand is not just changing its name and image on the package. It is also taking action to enhance inclusion and equity and setting out its new brand purpose to create opportunities that offer everyone a seat at the table.

Some of the opportunities Mars is taking include:

  • Making sure that underserved communities have access to the nutritious meals
  • Helping culinary entrepreneurs of all colors get educational opportunities
  • Enhancing educational opportunities for more than 7,500 area students, in Greenville, MS, where Ben's Original's has been made for 40 years, as well as furthering access to fresh foods.

The new packaging of Ben’s Original will begin reaching store shelves in 2021.