A dish of Ben and Jerrys ice cream
A new flavor of Ben & Jerry's ice cream is ruffling some feathers. Photo Credit: Don Chulio/Wikimedia Commons/CC-BY-SA

High-end ice cream brand Ben & Jerry’s announced recently that it was releasing the new flavor “Schweddy Balls,” named after a “Saturday Night Live” skit. Concerned parents are protesting the flavor for its lascivious name.

Group of parents not laughing

Ben & Jerry’s, the company known for eccentric but delicious ice cream flavors, has created controversy with a new flavor. The frozen confection is called “Schweddy Balls,” named for a “Saturday Night Live” sketch that aired, according to SNLtranscripts.jt.org, on Dec. 12, 1998.

The episode featured a recurring sketch called “The Delicious Dish,” which featured then-cast members Molly Shannon and Ana Gasteyer, along with whomever was hosting the show that night. In the “Schewddy Balls” sketch, that night’s host Alec Baldwin appears as a man named Pete Schweddy, who sells flavored dough balls around Christmas. Hot-buttered rum balls is a traditional holiday dessert.

Baldwin, Shannon and Gasteyer go on to talk about his “Schweddy balls.” Numerous testicle-related innuendos follow. That, according to “Today,” is why a group called One Million Moms is calling for Ben & Jerry’s treat to be boycotted.

Not the first flavor under fire

One Million Moms also took umbrage at Ben & Jerry’s “Hubby Hubby” flavor in 2009, according to the Daily Mail. “Hubby Hubby” was a re-packaged label of the “Chubby Hubby” flavor, celebrating the legalization of gay marriage in Vermont.

In 2006, Ben & Jerry’s “Black and Tan” flavor, according to the Guardian, spurred protests in Ireland and the flavor was pulled. The ice cream was flavored similarly to the “Black and Tan,” a cocktail made by mixing dark and light beers. The “Black and Tans” was the nickname of an auxiliary English police force in Ireland that carried out brutal attacks on Irish civilians during the 1920s.

Controversial company

One of the first protests against Ben & Jerry’s was in 1999, when Vermonters protested Ben & Jerry’s selling itself to Unilever, according to the New York Times.

Ben & Jerry’s is also known for political advocacy, often of a liberal stripe. A rival company started in 2003, according to MSNBC, called the Star Spangled Ice Cream Company, offering ice cream flavors like “Smaller GoverMINT,” “Cherry Falwell” and “Gun Nut.” According to Wikipedia, its no longer in business.

Environmental groups have also taken aim at the company. According to the Washington Post, Ben & Jerry’s took the “All Natural” tag off its labels when ingredients were found to be anything but. According to an Associated Press article on OrganicConsumers.org, Ben & Jerry’s was found in 2006 to be sourcing eggs from a farm that didn’t conform to cruelty-free standards.

Dieticians don’t condone Ben & Jerry’s, either. According to the Ben & Jerry’s website, a four-ounce serving of “Schweddy Balls” packs 270 calories. There are four servings per pint. “Chubby Hubby” lives up to its title, with 340 calories per four ounce serving.

Sources

Today: http://bites.today.com/_news/2011/09/21/7876625-parents-call-for-boycott-of-ben-jerrys-schweddy-balls-flavor

SNL Transcripts: http://snltranscripts.jt.org/98/98idish.phtml

Daily Mail: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2035144/Moms-horror-Ben–Jerrys-Schweddy-Balls–outrageous-ice-cream-coming-store-near-you.html

The Guardian: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2006/apr/19/ireland

New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/1999/12/22/us/vermonters-would-keep-lid-on-ben-jerry-s-pint.html?scp=7&sq=Ben%20&%20Jerry%27s&st=cse

MSNBC: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/11205169/ns/us_news/t/take-ben-jerry/#.Tno1M2WP-_0

Washington Post: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/09/27/AR2010092704053.html

OrganicConsumers.org:http://www.organicconsumers.org/articles/article_2592.cfm

Ben & Jerry’s flavors: http://www.benjerry.com/flavors/our-flavors/

Wikipedia on Chef Aid:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chef_Aid

Wikipedia on Star Spangled Ice Cream Co.: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Star_Spangled_Ice_Cream

 

 

 

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