Kendall Jenner accused of cultural appropriation amid her 818 tequila launch
21 May 2021, 16:17
The model has received backlash for "exploiting Mexican culture for profit" and "copying" authentic Tequila brands.
The 25-year-old model launched her new spirits company 818 Tequila earlier this week in California.
The Keeping Up With The Kardashians star teased the launch for months on her social media accounts.
While Jenner promoted the campaign on her Instagram by sharing a photo from the advert, she quickly disabled the comments after she was met with backlash.
Jenner was accused of exploiting Mexican culture.
In the image the model shared, she is pictured next to a horse in an agave field, with her hair in braids with a cowboy hat around her neck.
Other photos posted on the brand's Instagram included in the post show tequila farmers in the field, her sipping a shot of tequila and a video of herself as she watches a farmer distilling tequila from a distance.
In the caption, Jenner wrote: "what an incredible experience i have had thus far, learning about this beautiful place, it's beautiful culture, and the beautiful people! @drink818 has launched in California... we will be rolling out to the rest of the US all summer long, keep a look out!!!"
Fans took to Twitter to express Jenner's cultural appropriation and explain why the campaign is offensive.
One fan on Twitter wrote: "No miss Kendall, we do not ride in horses all the time, no we do not wear our hair in braids all the time, no workers do not get to drink the tequila (also that's not the way you drink it)".
Another fan wrote: "Kendall Jenner coming out with her “own” tequila is ultimate modern day colonizer vibes", while another added "not kendall jenner acting like she’s from the rancho just bc she made her own tequila".
Jenner also received backlash for naming her tequila label after her Calabasas area code 818, overlooking the spirit's Mexican roots and legacy.
On Wednesday (May 19) Kendall was called out by Austin's Tequila 512 – a tequila brand which pointed out the similarities in theirs and Kendall's brand.
The brand claimed that their product is distilled three times, whereas Kendall's is only distilled twice, yet she is charging twice the price of their bottles, both made in Jalisco, Mexico.
The statement from the brand began: 'You may have seen that @kendalljenner released a "new" tequila today. Note the similarities, including the color, the name and it is made at the same distillery in Tequila Mexico as ours.'
It continued: 'Their batches are being distilled twice. Ours three times. Yet she is charging twice as much per bottle. And here we are getting messages like the one in this post image. Doesn't seem very cool. What do you think?'
The Instagram post compared the two bottles, which lead a fan to ask the question, 'Is that you or did someone copy you?'.
Here's what fans had to say about Kendall's 818 Tequila on Twitter.
not Kendall Jenner disabling her comments on the post of her appropriating our culture for her tequila launch— V. (@_vvleon_) May 17, 2021
why is tequila so important in the mexican culture?— rex is zayn’s bestie ! 🇲🇽🇵🇸 (@talkfastloueh) May 19, 2021
it’s important because no other country can produce Tequila; it’s an important beverage that we use when we are happy, sad, celebrating, mourning etc. and it’s important for the country’s economy. pic.twitter.com/Q5XfHfEQUm
Kendall Jenner roamed through fields of agave on horseback to announce the launch of her 818 tequila brand in California with moody visuals shared to Instagram on Monday— Lilian Chan (@bestgug) May 18, 2021
despite tequila's deep-rooted Mexican history having no affiliation to the affluent community she grew up pic.twitter.com/s6Yk0ZXe45
the fact that tequila is made in mexico and kendall jenner named hers her area code rubs me the wrong way ,— liz (@gmunozliza) May 18, 2021
Let us know your thoughts @CapitalXRA