Ikea’s apology for its controversial Juneteenth-themed lunch menu is leaving a bad taste in the mouths of Georgia’s black community leaders.
An Atlanta branch of the Swedish big box store is under fire this week for what employees denounced as a highly offensive “special menu” curated to celebrate the June 19 holiday, which marks the emancipation of the last enslaved Americans.
“We got it wrong and we sincerely apologize,” Ikea reps told The Post of the problematic menu, which was hyped to staffers as featuring “fried chicken, watermelon, mac ‘n’ cheese, potato salad, collard greens, candied yams . . . to honor the perseverance of Black Americans.”
James Woodall, president of the NAACP’s Georgia state chapter, is not ready to accept the Scandinavian furniture chain’s mea culpa for the tone-deaf meal plan just yet.
Woodhall told TMZ that Ikea’s official response to the public outrage was merely “an empty, performative gesture.” Point blank: He thinks Ikea owes answers to its constituents — store employees and customers, alike.
Critics called out Ikea for hyping “soul food” dishes that have historically been used to demean African Americans through stereotyping, with multiple employees calling out of work in protest, according to a local news channel.
“You cannot say serving watermelon on Juneteenth is a soul food menu when you don’t even know the history. They used to feed slaves watermelon,” an anonymous employee told Atlanta’s CBS 46. “It caused a lot of people to be upset. People actually wanted to quit. People weren’t coming back to work.”
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SOURCE: New York Post, Rob Bailey-Millado and Hannah Frishberg