Business

Issue of the day: M&Ms go ‘woke’ with a redesign

THEY are little multicoloured chocolates that have been around for more than 80 years, but M&Ms are being redesigned for a “more dynamic, progressive world”, with a focus on “female empowerment” and inclusivity.

Inclusive chocolates?

The chocolates’ iconic characters have had a modern makeover, with the redesign aiming to show the brand “continues to evolve” to reflect today’s more “progressive world”. Maker Mars Wrigley says they want to “create a world where everyone feels they belong”.

 

Specifically?

The headline changes see the six iconic M&M characters – the different coloured ‘M&Ms’ each with their own personality that feature in commercials and merchandise – overhauled, with the biggest changes appearing to be to the two female M&Ms, the green and brown ones. 

 

What are the changes?

The green character’s white heeled go-go boots have been replaced by “cool, laid-back sneakers to reflect her effortless confidence”. Mars state the change will see the green M&M “better represented” in order to “reflect confidence and empowerment, as a strong female” and allow her to be “known for much more than her boots”.

 

It comes after…?

Mars had been criticised in the past for making the green M&M “too sexy”.

 

What else?

The brown M&M’s heels have been lowered to a “professional heel height”. Meanwhile, the traditionally angst-ridden orange M&M, who previously had untied shoes, will now have tied laces, with Mars saying: “Orange is one of the most relatable characters with Gen-Z, which is also the most anxious generation”.

 

Yellow and Red?

In the past, yellow was a bit dopey and slow to catch on, but the new version “has wisdom in his own right and forces us to see the world as it should be”. Red, who was the sometimes bossy and cheeky alpha leader, is now to be “kinder” and “share the limelight…allowing each character to shine as their own star”.

 

What’s it all about?

Mars say they hope these changes will demonstrate the importance of “self-expression and power of community”.  Cathryn Sleight, Chief Growth Officer at Mars Wrigley, said: “M&M’S has long been committed to creating colourful fun for all, and this purpose serves as a more concrete commitment to what we’ve always believed as a brand: that everyone has the right to enjoy moments of happiness, and fun is the most powerful way to help people feel that they belong”.

 

The sweets are historic?

The sweets were introduced in the US in 1941, with the ‘M’s representing the names of the producer Forrest Mars Sr and also Bruce Murrie, whose family had a 20 per cent share in the product, before being introduced internationally in the 1980s.

 

What is the world making of all of this?

Reactions online include one tweet saying “M&M’s rebranding for ‘more inclusivity’ is fake woke corporate marketing”, while another wrote: “The Green M&M is under attack by the woke mob.”

 

 

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