ARDEN HILLS, Minn. — After 92 years, Minnesota-based Land O'Lakes has removed the image of a Native American woman from their packaging.
The new package design features 'Farmer Owned' in large text over the familiar background of green pine trees and a blue lake. Some butter packages show an image of farmers standing in a field with the words, “Proud to be Farmer-Owned: As a farmer-owned co-op, we stand together to bring you the very best in dairy.”
Many people have criticized the image of the Native American woman as culturally insensitive, but in an interview with the Huffington Post, Land O' Lakes President and CEO Beth Ford did not cite cultural sensitivity as the motivation for the change in packaging.
In a press release, Ford said, “as Land O’Lakes looks toward our 100th anniversary, we’ve recognized we need packaging that reflects the foundation and heart of our company culture—and nothing does that better than our farmer-owners whose milk is used to produce Land O’Lakes’ dairy products”.
Ford went on to say, “as a farmer-owned co-op, we strongly feel the need to better connect the men and women who grow our food with those who consume it".
Land O'Lakes says the new packaging is released on several products, with more coming in 2020.