Brookvale Union Brewery apologises for using Hindu Deities on Beer bottle Label!

hindu goddess on beer bottle

Sydney, 18th Nov, 2013
It is good to hear, in black & white, that Brookvale Union Brewery [which has a Ginger Beer with 4% Alcohol, and used an offensive imagery of Hindu deities on its Label] has;
1. recognised the offence caused to Indians and Hindus with the imagery on their Ginger Beer,
2. decided to rectify the mistake,
3. asked it graphic designers to redesign the imagery without using images which are deemed offensive,
4. advised the commencement of the process to redesign an alternative label and marketing material,
5. apologised for the distress caused by the offensive imagery.
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Full Press Release from the Brewery:
“BROOKVALE UNION ADDRESSES CRITICISM OVER CONTROVERSIAL PRODUCT AND INVITES DESIGNERS TO CREATE NEW GINGER BEER LABEL:
Here at Brookvale Union, we take pride in …producing great tasting drinks and we think we’ve nailed that on the head with our alcoholic Ginger Beer and Apple Cider. However, it seems we have unintentionally offended our Hindu friends with the imagery on our Ginger Beer packaging and because we’re lovers, not fighters, we want to make it right. Brookvale Union is asking graphic designers, artists, and even doodlers who think they can rise up to the challenge to put pen on paper and better the existing design. Take inspiration from wherever you want, you just have to adhere to the following brief: – Ensure your submission aligns with the Brookvale Union brand – refer to the website, existing Apple Cider and Ginger Beer bottles and cartons, Facebook and Instagram pages for inspiration – To the best of the designers’ knowledge, do not use imagery that may be deemed offensive – Keep our tagline of ‘Quality Nonsense’ in mind Submissions will be accepted until 5pm on Sunday, 24 November and should be sent to brookvaleunion@gmail.com. The chosen design will become part of the new branding for the Brookvale Union range and featured on bottles, packaging and marketing material. We’ve received feedback from many Hindu’s over the last few days – some find the label offensive, others do not. Nevertheless, it was not our intention to offend a group of people. Brookvale Union is about great tasting, fun beverages and not about disrespecting anyone or their beliefs. We have subsequently apologised for any distress caused and begun the process of removing the images from the website. We are now focused on redesigning the Ginger Beer which hopefully all can be happy with! Brookvale Union. Complex yet simple, safe but dangerous, smooth yet sharp, tight but loose, clever but not always right. For more information or any questions, please contact brookvaleunion@gmail.com”
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Brookvale Union Brewery’s Ginger Beer [4% Alcohol by Volume] had an offensive imagery of juxtaposed images of Lord Ganesh and Goddess Lakshmi.  See previous post here: https://yadusingh.wordpress.com/2013/11/10/hindu-deities-on-the-beer-bottle-is-offensive-and-hurtful/

A concerted and organised protest was launched by Indian Australians and their groups/associations throughout Australia and even Overseas.

A “Well done” and thanks are due to many Indian Australians, Indian Australian Association of NSW, Hindu Council of Australia and Sikh Council of Australia for their active role in it.

We need to be vigilant for any such inappropriate use of our religious symbols in future too, and work together in an organised fashion to redress any mistake.
Australia is a true multicultural country and every religious, racial and ethnic group is entitled to enjoy its beliefs and celebrate its heritage, without anyone ridiculing or making fun of their values, religion, religious symbols and deities, and religious activities, provided such activities or beliefs are within the core values of modern Australia.
Dr Yadu Singh

Hindu deities on the Beer bottle is offensive and hurtful!

hindu goddess on beer bottle

I have become aware about the picture of Hindu deities on the bottle of Beer in NSW.  The juxtaposed picture has Goddess Lakshmi and Lord Ganesha with the head of a Cow in one hand and fire coming out of the Lord Ganesha’s head.

When you visit their website (http://www.brookvaleunion.com.au), you will see the picture there too. The website describes their products “Brookvale Union Apple Cider (5.2% ABV) and Brookvale Union Ginger Beer (4.0% ABV)”, indicating they are Alcoholic beverages. This inappropriate picture becomes the picture of Sachin Tendulkar when you place the cursor over the pic. This is in very poor taste and obviously very cheap, besides being insensitive.

This is offensive, unacceptable and objectionable. Lord Ganesha is one of the most important deities of Hinduism and is worshipped for wisdom. Lord Ganesha  is invoked for blessings before any work. Goddess Lakshmi is worshipped for the fortune and wealth.

Hinduism is the third largest religion and is a peaceful religion.

There is a trend among some to use deities of Hinduism inappropriately, which should stop.

Brookvale Union Brewery in Northern New South Wales. Australia is wrong to place deities of Hinduism in the label of its Ginger beer bottle, hurting the feelings of Hindus. Using deities and symbols of Hinduism in this grossly inappropriate and offensive manner is not a matter of joke or fun.

They have a tagline of “Quality Nonsense”, but to us, hurting religious feelings of people is nothing but “Nonsense” and there is no “quality” in it.

We condemn this behaviour.

We ask them to;

1. remove these labels,

2. stop using pictures of deities of Hinduism in their beer bottles,

3. apologise for hurting the feeling of Hinduism practitioners.

 

Dr Yadu Singh/Sydney/10th Nov, 2013

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