Pret A Manger pulls ‘Virgin Mary’ crisps following religious backlash
Sandwich chain Pret A Manger has been forced to pull a new brand of crisps after a protest campaign was launched by Catholic organisation, Protect the People. The own-brand range of tomato and chilli crisps was given the name ‘Virgin Mary’, a play on the similarly flavoured Bloody Mary cocktail. However, catholic groups complained the name was offensive because of the reference to Christ’s mother. Pret A Manger’s chief executive, Clive Schlee, initially defended the name of the crisps but gave the order to withdraw them from Pret shelves after more complaints were received. The company said: “We have received calls regarding a new range of crisps we launched this week. We don’t want to offend a single customer, so we have responded immediately and taken them out of our shops.” Protect the Pope said on its website: “Clive Schlee and Pret A Manger deserve our unreserved thanks for listening to our concerns as Catholics and for acting so quickly to remove the brand of crisps. “One of the things we need to go away and think about is what this incident tells us about how we defend our faith in the future. We’ve been passive for too long in the face of mockery of our faith and discrimination against us as Catholics.” Pret A Manger has said that any unopened bags of Virgin Mary crisps will be given to charities for the homeless.