Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Letter of Apology from Carlsburg Goup on KOFF Beer Commercials

Letter of Apology from Carlsburg Goup on KOFF Beer Commercials
Thank you to everyone that participated in this effort to remove the horrible commercial that featured Native actors being used to sell alcohol.
UNITED we can accomplish ANYTHING! Even making MTV pull that horrible trashy, and racist episode down of the Dudesons
(see our notes for more info)


Letter of Appology from Carlsburg Group on KOff Beer Commercials
Today at 6:48am

This letter was sent to May Blueotter from the former makers of KOff Beer pertaining to the extremely offensive commercials they shot that perpetuated the Alcoholic stereotype. The commercials were also disgracefull because as Native peoples, alcoholism was a tool of the genocide which we are still fighting today.


Marja-Liisa Weckström
Viestintä- ja lakiasiainjohtaja / Director, Communications and Legal
6:18 AM May 25, 2010

Dear May Blueotter,
I am Marja-Liisa Weckström from Sinebrychoff, which is a fully owned company of Carlsberg Group in Finland. I have today received your e-mail which you have sent on the 23rd of May to some of my colleaques in the Group. Since the commercial and product in question originated from our company, I would kindly like to respond to you. First of all: We are deeply sorry for the negative feelings it has caused you and your people. Before going into any deeper I would like to inform you that the beer has not been in the market since January 2008. Thus, there is no advertising of it by our company or by our parent company Carlsberg Group.
The said beer was introduced in April 2007 to the Finnish beer market as a seasonal corn beer and listed out of our product portfolio in January 2008. The product was never exported and the commercial in the Finnish TV was on fro some two weeks on one channel. Before its launch our Marketing Department worked closely with Dakota Indians who also featured in the commercial. This was done in order to respect the said people. Thus, our honest purpose was not to hurt or insult the American Indians, not to be racist nor derive them of their dignity. The Natives are greatly respected in Finland and also by our company. Unfortunately, we were not sensitive enough to understand firstly how this kind of advertising is indeed building a stereotype of the Natives and is secondly undermining the seriousness of the problems that alcohol has caused among many of them.

I would like to apologize you and your people for not understanding the issues behind and thus making our product and its commercial hurt you and your people.

We have learned an important lesson. We did list the product out in 2008. Yet, in the era of internet, the commercial can unfortunately still be found. We shall seek ways to contact those still possessing the film with a request to abolish it from the web. Let me assure you that Sinebrychoff and its parent company Carlsberg Group have not any ongoing viral campaigns - or any other marketing campaigns – on the cancelled beer brand.

I hope you will accept our company’s apologies and stay in contact with us in case you have further questions or any comments that you would like to share with us.

Yours sincerely,

Marja-Liisa Weckström
Viestintä- ja lakiasiainjohtaja / Director, Communications and Legal

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