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Jamie Oliver's 'jerk rice' accused of cultural appropriation

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Jamie Oliver has been accused of cultural appropriation for calling a new product "punchy jerk rice". The decision to label the microwavable rice "jerk" has been criticised, because the product doesn't contain many of the ingredients traditionally used in a Jamaican jerk marinade. "I'm just wondering do you know what Jamaican jerk actually isNewsbeat has contacted representatives of Jamie Oliver for comment.
Skip Twitter post by @DawnButlerBrent
#jamieoliver @jamieoliver #jerk I'm just wondering do you know what #Jamaican #jerk actually is? It's not just a word you put before stuff to sell products. @levirootsmusic should do a masterclass. Your jerk Rice is not ok. This appropriation from Jamaica needs to stop.— (((Dawn Butler MP))) (@DawnButlerBrent) August 18, 2018
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Jerk seasoning is usually used on chicken. The dish is often barbecued.
Jerk rice isn't really a thing, which is why a lot of people reacted angrily to Jamie's new creation.
Skip Twitter post by @ReginaHolland_
There's no such thing as jerk rice apart from what Jamie Oliver has concocted. That's her point. Anybody from any nationality can eat anything they want, there are just some dishes that are best left alone and enjoyed how they're supposed to be made.— Regina Holland (@ReginaHolland_) August 18, 2018
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Skip Twitter post by @tune876
No but I’m honestly upset bout this Jamie Oliver jerk rice. Rice can jerk!? Friggin yam head, Only 2 things can jerk an is chicken an pork, likkle teefing bwoy dem. They love to copy other ppl things and sell it, hardly even know what the term mean— Mr.Sam (@tune876) August 19, 2018
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I am still not over this Jerk Rice nonsense. Just no Jamie Oliver NOOOOOO!!!!— Nells from ?? (@nells_mc) August 19, 2018
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Skip Twitter post by @jacquelinemarrs
Tim there is no such thing as “jerk rice “ . Jamie Oliver put it on his product/recipe to make money. That is appropriation of culture— JacquiM (@jacquelinemarrs) August 18, 2018
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Skip Twitter post by @mayamariex
You can’t compare making Spag Bol to Jamie Oliver’s Jerk Rice, JERK RICE ISNT A THING? that’s why it’s so out of order.— Maya (@mayamariex) August 20, 2018
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Cultural appropriation: Exchange of ideas or the politics of power?
When does cultural borrowing turn into cultural appropriation?
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People have also questioned the ingredients in Jamie's rice. There are many variations of jerk marinade, but most contain allspice, scotch bonnet chillies, thyme, soy sauce, ginger, lime, garlic, onions and sugar. Jamie's "punchy jerk rice" mixes garlic, ginger and jalapenos "to create a jerk marinade with attitude".
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It's like stamping a Union Jack on "traditional fish and chips" except the fish is a salmon en croute and the chips are crisps.— David Llewellyn (@TheDaiLlew) August 18, 2018
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It's Labour politician Dawn Butler's tweet about the rice which seems to have really started a discussion though. Plenty of people have accused the MP of making something out of nothing. A Conservative MP was one of them.
Skip Twitter post by @NeilDotObrien
If Jamie Oliver isn’t allowed to make Jerk chicken because it’s cultural “appropriation” she’s going to go mad when she finds out about “Jamie’s Italy” https://t.co/uY7YzWZ5Vr— Neil O'Brien MP (@NeilDotObrien) August 18, 2018
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And others echoed his views.
Skip Twitter post by @GeoffNorcott
She’s gonna blow her lid when she finds out he’s not even Italian.— Geoff Norcott (@GeoffNorcott) August 19, 2018
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Skip Twitter post by @pjm56tw
I just wish we could all enjoy the bests bits of each others cultures without accusations being thrown around.— Phil Moore (@pjm56tw) August 19, 2018
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So only Greeks can run in the London Marathon ?— JC_Cat (@Pottonski) August 19, 2018
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Skip Twitter post by @Ben1jammin
Are you honestly saying that white people can’t cook food from other cultures in case they get it slightly wrong?— Benjamin Tucker (@Ben1jammin) August 18, 2018
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It's fair to say people are divided. There was a similar argument earlier this month about a range of Indian food sold by Marks & Spencer. Food writer Mallika Basu questioned the ingredients used in a "Bengali turmeric curry".
Skip Twitter post by @MallikaBasu_
I grew up in Bengal, head back regularly and I have no idea what Bengali Turmeric Curry is. With celery seeds, tamarind and coconut no less.
Can someone please enlighten me? pic.twitter.com/YVNuS6ccqK— ? Mallika Basu ? (@MallikaBasu_) August 8, 2018
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M&S told BBC Radio 4 at the time: "The curry kit was developed to be a traditional Bengali malai turmeric curry, a celebratory dish, popular with the British population in Kolkata."But Mallika thought the supermarket had a "responsibility" to do better, when asked whether M&S was just catering for "British tastes". "We're not in the 1960s anymore, we're not in the 1950s. People's opinions, tastes and knowledge about what constitutes regional curries has evolved tremendously. "When you're going into really specific regions and you're giving things names that are obviously trying to give these things a more authentic regional gloss, I'm afraid that just doesn't cut it in today's world anymore."
Skip Twitter post 2 by @MallikaBasu_
"It matters that when you're selling products of a certain culture and nation, you show a bit of respect and get to the bottom of what should feature in that recipe"
Catch me and @wrobinson101 on @BBCRadio4 #youandyours on curry kits: https://t.co/dzMoG6o5A4 (9:27min in)— ? Mallika Basu ? (@MallikaBasu_) August 16, 2018
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Jamie Oliver
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