Three months after ceasing production, Edy’s has changed the name of its Eskimo Pie ice cream bars to Edy’s Pie.
In June, Edy’s parent company, Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream, joined a substantial number of well-known brands in their decisions to rename racially insensitive brands. Many of the products, like Uncle Ben’s and Aunt Jemima, displayed antiquated imagery and names that continued to reinforce racist stereotypes. Since the killing of George Floyd in March triggered global Black Lives Matter protests, many companies have been reckoning with problematic logos, themes and marketing.
With its announcement to rethink the branding for its century-old chocolate-covered ice cream bars, Dreyer's halted production completely so that no more packages could circulate in stores.
“We are committed to being a part of the solution on racial equality, and recognize the term is derogatory," Elizabell Marquez, head of marketing for Dreyer's Grand Ice Cream, the U.S. subsidiary for Froneri, said in a statement at the time. “This move is part of a larger review to ensure our company and brands reflect our people values.”
The ice cream bar was first patented by Christian Kent Nelson of Ohio and his business partner, Russell C. Stover, in 1922, according to Smithsonian Magazine. The name "Eskimo" was commonly used in Alaska to refer to Inuit and Yupik people, according to the Alaska Native Language Center at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, but, as the website explains,"this usage is now considered unacceptable by many or even most Alaska Natives, largely since it is a colonial name imposed by non-Indigenous people."
On Monday, Marquez confirmed to TODAY Food the company trademarked its new name to omit the derogatory term. Instead, it will pay homage to the treat’s co-founder, Joseph Edy.
“The name Edy’s Pie was chosen in honor of one of our company’s founders, candy maker Joseph Edy, as well as a form of tribute to the entrepreneurial origins of this treat,” Marquez told TODAY. “The Eskimo Pie was created over 100 years ago by a candy store owner who wanted to appease a young boy’s indecision on whether to buy ice cream or a chocolate bar with his nickel — he invented a way to coat ice cream with melted chocolate, and the rest was history.”
According to Marquez, the chocolaty ice cream bars and their corrected packaging will return to stores by early 2021.