Cadbury Criticized For Renaming Easter Egg Hunt
British chocolate giant Cadbury drew some ire from conservatives and Christians last week when it rebranded its annual “Easter Egg Trail” as “The Great British Egg Hunt”. The annual event, which is now in its 10th year, is conducted in partnership with the National Trust and this year will sponsor 300 egg hunts across the UK.
The removal of the word “Easter” from the title has been criticized by the Archbishop of York, John Sentamu, saying, “To drop Easter from Cadbury's Easter Egg Hunt in my book is tantamount to spitting on the grave of [John] Cadbury.” He went on to credit the founder of Cadbury’s Quaker faith for his success as an industrialist.
British Prime Minister Theresa May also weighed in. She took a break from an official trip to the Middle East to issue the following statement: “Easter's very important. It's important to me, it's a very important festival for the Christian faith for millions across the world. So I think what the National Trust is doing is frankly just ridiculous.” More ridiculous, apparently, than a Prime Minister taking the time to criticize a heritage organization and chocolate company over their branding.
Cadbury and The National Trust have denied that this was an attempt to airbrush Easter out of the holiday. The National Trust called the accusation “nonsense,” citing the dozens of references to Easter on their website and in their promotional material. Cadbury, in a statement to the media, said it was “simply not true to claim that we have removed the word ‘Easter’ from our marketing and communication materials.” It added, “We invite people from all faiths and none to enjoy our seasonal treats.”
However, these issuances have done little to dissuade the angry public, with thousands threatening to boycott the events and withdraw their membership from the National Trust.
This is just another case of misplaced religious outrage, much like the imaginary “War on Christmas,” designed to stoke populist and religious fire in a voter base that the conservative Theresa May appeals to. Upon any thought or examination, it is pretty clear that the charges are bogus, or at least inconsequential, and that this outrage is manufactured.