Master P is using his passion for food — not music! — to give back to Black communities in need.
The New Orleans rapper and jack of all trades has created a line of "Uncle P" food products that will donate a portion of profits to programs benefiting inner city children and elderly people in Black communities across the country. The new line includes everything from rice, beans and grits to pancake mix, syrup and oatmeal.
"I'm grateful that I'm in a position to add some diversity in packaged foods," the 50-year-old told CNN. "It's not just about having the Uncle P products, but also having a good cause behind it. I'm happy that I can make a difference in my communities."
Master P, whose real name is Percy Miller, hopes his brand inspires other Black entrepreneurs to follow their dreams and believes the time is right to support more Black-owned businesses, especially after many mainstream brands have recently come under fire for perpetuating harmful stereotypes.
Following public outcry, Quaker Oats announced in June that they would remove the controversial image of Aunt Jemima from its popular line of pancake mixes and maple syrups at the end of 2020 and would change the name at a later date. The same month, Mars Inc., the parent company of Uncle Ben's, announced that they were planning a "brand evaluation" as part of efforts to "take a stand in helping to put an end to racial bias and injustices."
"When you look at Aunt Jemima and Uncle Ben, a lot of those products are mockeries of African-American people and couldn't even feed our communities. With Uncle P, the more we make, the more we give. And the only way to give is by owning these products," Miller said.
The rapper said he wants to apply a portion of the profits towards developing real estate in Black communities and hopes the brand will create more job opportunities for these communities as well.
"Right now we're burning down our blocks and our communities while protesting injustice, but if we are able to own products and put money back in our community, we could buy those blocks back instead of burning them down," he said.
According to CNN, Master P launched his brand in March and products are currently available at grocery stores across the country. Believe it or not, this isn't the rapper's first foray into the food industry. While helping relaunch the Rap Snacks brand last year, the entrepreneur released his own line of prepackaged ramen noodles called Rap Noodles.