Rumours are spreading across social media that Easter Eggs have been banned, or that the word “Easter” has been removed from packaging, because it offends other religions.
The rumours are often fueled by a March 2016 article from The Daily Star (above) with the headline “Easter Eggs are Banned“. This has led to a number of different rumours, including the claim that UK supermarket Tesco has banned Easter Eggs (or the word Easter) or that chocolate company Cadbury has removed/banned the word Easter from their packaging.
What’s true: The story did appear in the Daily Star on March 23rd 2016 with that headline.
What’s false: While a selection of Easter related products no longer feature the word “Easter” as prominently as they have done in previous years, most products still contain the word ‘Easter’ a number of times on the packaging, thus disproving the claim that the word has been banned. Additionally, many products (including products from Cadbury’s and products found in Tesco’s) still feature the word Easter prominently on the packaging as well as embossed on the egg itself. There is absolutely no evidence that any Easter products have had packaging altered to avoid offending other religions, or that members of other religions are offended by something as frivolous as Easter Egg packaging.
On March 23rd 2016, The Daily Star newspaper in the UK printed an article that claimed Easter Eggs are now banned because they offend other religions. This has fueled many social media rumours on Twitter and Facebook.
However, like with many articles printed by the UK’s notorious tabloid press, this article contains very little truth and plenty of angry scaremongering. Thus the story itself – as well as the social media rumours it has fuelled – are almost entirely false.
Firstly the primary claim is that Easter Eggs – namely Cadbury’s – do not have the word Easter printed on them. This is demonstrably false. We ourselves examined several eggs in a Sainsbury’s supermarket and found the word Easter appeared at least once on every package. You can see the photos we took below to confirm this –
And some products even contain the word “Easter” very obviously indeed –
Additionally you can visit the homepage of Cadbury’s and see Easter related material printed all over the homepage!
ADDITIONALLY Cadbury’s have made numerous mentions to Easter on their social media channels…
— Cadbury UK (@CadburyUK) March 7, 2016
Thus accusations or rumours (fuelled by The Daily Star article) that Easter or Easter Eggs are banned or are being removed are entirely baseless.
Secondly, the rumours assert that this perceived omission of the word Easter has something to do with political correctness regarding offending other religions. There is simply no substance to this accusation. From what we have determined, no company producing chocolate eggs for Easter have asserted they will be avoiding the word Easter for fear of offending religious groups, nor are we aware of any religious groups announcing that they are offended by Easter or indeed Easter Eggs.
Some social media commentators have pointed out that the word Easter is not displayed prominently on the packaging. Well, looking back through the years, many Easter Egg packaging have not emphasised the word Easter prominently for some time. Most large companies have opted to emphasize their brand and product on the packaging, not the word ‘Easter’, and this has been the case for a number of years now. In fact many companies have never displayed the term Easter prominently on their packaging. You can see images of older Easter Eggs from the 1970s here that contain no obvious mention of Easter.
A Cadbury’s spokesperson tells us –
It is very obvious through the packaging that it is an Easter egg. We do not have a policy to remove the word ‘Easter’ from our packs or marketing. Some of our marketing states Easter and some just Egg.
Cadbury’s have also issued the following statement regarding products where the word Easter is not displayed as prominently as it has done before –
Most of our Easter eggs don’t say Easter or egg on the front as we don’t feel the need to tell people this – it is very obvious through the packaging that it is an Easter egg
Hence there is simply no evidence or even any suggestion that this has anything to do with offending religious minorities. It is simply a business decision to help promote a brand while appealing to a wide a demographic as possible. Basically, it’s just business, and not any kind of subversive muting of Western culture as all this alarmist nonsense would have you believe.
The Daily Star is trash tabloid journalism. Given some of their headlines in the past, this is something that most people in the UK must surely have been aware of by now. They do not provide a fair reflection of reality, but opt to go with the headline that will sell the most copy and entice the most clicks. Upon reading The Daily Star article, almost all of it contains no factual information, rather just tiny out-of-context sound-bites from individuals interviewed with leading questions about their feelings that some Easter Eggs do not have the word Easter on them.
No, Easter has not been banned, nor has the word. No company is avoiding the word Easter because it will offend other religions. This is trash journalism, pure and simple. Designed to anger people with finger pointing at some perceived wrong where no wrong really exists.
The entire article contains no substance whatsoever and relies on well-used rhetoric about offending religions that we’ve seen in the past when many headlines claimed that “Christmas had been cancelled”.
As is included in the Daily Star article itself (right at the end, of course,) Cadbury’s have said – “We do not have a policy to drop Easter from our eggs.”
And you can pick up any Easter Egg and find that out for yourself.