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Land O'Lakes Removes Native American Mascot From Their Packaging

by Rudy Sanchez on 04/17/2020 | 2 Minute Read

Announced in February, Minnesota-based dairy brand Land O’ Lakes has completed a significant change to all their packaging, removing the iconic Indigenous woman kneeling in a field holding a box of butter while wearing traditional, native garb. According to the brand, the update is now part of a new strategy emphasizing the farmers that make up their co-op. With the Native American butter maiden erased, they now highlight the phrase “Farmer-Owned” above the wordmark.

Although the move comes as Native American mascots are being replaced and even outlawed, Land O’ Lakes sidesteps the controversy, claiming the move is part of a strategy to highlight the farm-to-fork quality of their product, addressing a current consumer trend that is in no way related to the problematic logo they carried since 1928.

Editorial photograph

“As Land O’Lakes looks toward our 100th anniversary, we’ve recognized we need packaging that reflects the foundation and heart of our company culture—and nothing does that better than our farmer-owners whose milk is used to produce Land O’Lakes’ dairy products,” said Beth Ford, president and CEO of Land O’ Lakes, in an announcement.

“As a farmer-owned co-op, we strongly feel the need to better connect the men and women who grow our food with those who consume it,” Ford added in the same announcement. “Our farmer-to-fork structure gives us a unique ability to bridge this divide."

Editorial photograph

As the rebrand reaches more people, some like Peggy Flanagan, Lieutenant Governor of Minnesota, herself a member of the White Earth Band of Ojibwe tribe, praised the move, saying in a tweet, “Thank you to Land O’Lakes for making this important and needed change. Native people are not mascots or logos. We are very much still here."