In an interesting twist on Chinese knock-offs, an American creamery is marketing White Rabbit-flavored ice cream, and the original White Rabbit company are none too pleased.
Over the Lunar New Year, LA’s Wanderlust Creamery launched a limited edition White Rabbit candy-flavored ice cream flavor based on the iconic milky sweets from Shanghai. Instagrammers lusted over the results.
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The hype caught on with Chinese netizens as well, who took to social media channels at home to demand a domestically-produced product, and news naturally reached White Rabbit’s parent company, Guanshengyuan.
The company’s marketing department has now issued a statement saying they didn’t authorize this use of their product, and are looking to get in touch with Wanderlust to investigate the alleged infringement. All mention of the White Rabbit ice cream appears to have been removed from Wanderlust’s Instagram.
This serves as a sobering reminder that this trend of limited-edition items made with nostalgic Asian ingredients might have some unforeseen consequences. Better watch out, Wanderlust: you might be getting “soft served.”
Update: A reporter from The Beijing Youth Daily has apparently contacted Wanderlust Creamery and got the latest scoop in this White Rabbit tale. Wanderlust reportedly told them that the wrapping for the actual ice creams didn’t feature any White Rabbit wrappers or imagery, and that the name for this ice cream officially was “The White.”
Checks out? Here’s how Wanderlust advertised the ice cream on their Facebook:
Those images with White Rabbit logo-covered ice cream wrappers that were all over social media? Apparently they were just “promotional concept photos.” Whether that’ll satiate Guanshengyuan’s appetite for some sort of compensation remains to be seen.
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