Ikea apologises over jerk chicken with 'rice and peas' for sale in cafe

'The literal rice and peas is killing my soul'

Zamira Rahim
Tuesday 17 September 2019 16:05
Ikea apologises over jerk chicken with 'rice and peas' for sale in cafe

Ikea has apologised after selling a jerk chicken and rice and peas dish cooked with the wrong ingredients in cafes inside its UK stores.

Rice and peas, a traditional Caribbean dish, is made using long grain rice, kidney beans and coconut milk.

The Swedish company appears to have taken the “peas” in the dish’s name literally and created a dish featuring green garden peas cooked in plain white rice.

The rice was served in Ikea cafes with jerk chicken and lime. The misunderstanding prompted mockery online.

“This is Ikea’s jerk chicken and rice and peas and no I’m not eating it,” wrote one Twitter user, posting an image of the rice.

“When cultural appropriation goes wrong,” added a second.

“The chicken don’t look bad. But the literal rice and peas is killing my soul.”

The image spread rapidly online, drawing criticism over the inaccurate ingredients and accusations of cultural disrespect.

Ikea has now removed the dish from its menu and said it was “relooking” at it.

“Ikea is a Swedish home furnishing company with a much-loved food offer,” Lorena Lourido, head of food at Ikea in UK and Ireland said.

“We take inspiration from many countries around the world and have always worked to combine different flavours and ingredients to offer delicious, healthy and affordable dishes.

“We’re aware that our new jerk chicken, served with rice and peas has created some conversation and in some cases offence.

Support free-thinking journalism and attend Independent events

“Our intention was to create a dish for many people to enjoy but we appreciate that we may have got it wrong. We apologise and we are now relooking at the dish.”

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

View comments