The satirical newspaper The Onion appears to have been onto something as the outlet tweeted about the removal of breakfast food mascot Aunt Jemima hours before it was announced that she will be removed from products.
Amid the cultural shift following the death of George Floyd, Aunt Jemima is the latest longtime icon to be canceled due to the racist depiction that stemmed from mascot's creation. After 131 years, Quaker Oats announced her presence in grocery stores is coming to an end.
"We recognize Aunt Jemima's origins are based on a racial stereotype," Kristin Kroepfl, vice president and chief marketing officer of Quaker Foods North America, said in a statement obtained by FOX Business. "As we work to make progress toward racial equality through several initiatives, we also must take a hard look at our portfolio of brands and ensure they reflect our values and meet our consumers’ expectations."
However, roughly eight hours before the announcement, The Onion tweeted about the controversial mascot and jokingly reported about Quaker Oats' plans for her replacement.
"Quaker Oats Replaces Historically Racist Aunt Jemima Mascot With Black Female Lawyer Who Enjoys Pancakes Sometimes," the headline read.
The article, which was published on Friday, details how Aunt Jemima was being replaced with "Sheila," who is "an African American woman who wears a suit, carries a briefcase, and isn’t an aunt per se, though she is godmother to the child of a dear friend she met as an undergraduate at Dartmouth College."
"Our new mascot is based on several real-life black women who are lawyers and eat pancakes some mornings when they aren’t too busy litigating on behalf of the disadvantaged," a fictitious statement from Quaker Oats said. "While Sheila does enjoy our extended line of breakfast foods, that is only one small facet of her rich and complex identity as a human being: Sheila also speaks fluent Italian, likes U2, is bisexual, and enjoys cross-country skiing."
In the Onion piece, Quaker Oats jokingly stressed that Sheila "never serves the pancakes herself" but occasionally "goes to a diner near the courthouse where waitresses and waiters of a variety of races serve them to her."
The Onion also "reported" that Mars Inc. announced its plans to replace its own mascot, Uncle Ben, with a "black engineering graduate student."
Following the announcement about Aunt Jemima, Mars Inc. did, in fact, announce plans to phase out the Uncle Ben's brand, saying "We know we have a responsibility to take a stand in helping to put an end to racial bias and injustices.
“Racism has no place in society. We stand in solidarity with the Black community, our Associates and our partners in the fight for social justice. We know to make the systemic change needed, it’s going to take a collective effort from all of us — individuals, communities and organizations of all sizes around the world," the company said.
FOX Business' Daniella Genovese contributed to this report.