Michael B. Jordan received backlash of his liquor brand including from Nicki Minaj for cultural appropriation claims after using J’Ouvert for his brand.
Michael B. Jordan has reportedly diversified his portfolio with J’Ouvert Rum. It’s another way for celebrities to capitalize on their notoriety as they open up new streams of revenue, but quickly, Jordan was tacked with cultural appropriation allegations.
A description of the rum reads, “Derives from the Antellian Creole French term meaning ‘daybreak,’ J’OUVERT originated in the pre-dawn streets of Trinidad, as celebration of emancipation combined with Carnival season to serve as the festival informal commencements. Crafted on those same islands, J’OUVERT Rum is a tribute to the party [starting].”
Following the viral controversy, Nicki Minaj emerged with an opinion, and it has been widely accepted, especially considering her Trinidadian roots. She reposted a comment from someone that was angered over Jordan’s rum’s moniker. “J’Ouvert also known as jouvay originated in Trinidad with the festivities of Canboulay, which was a time when sugarcane fields caught on fire and slaves were still forced to harvest the remainding crops before complete destruction.”
The historical event is honored at Carnival and people believe that their history is being used to sell alcohol without proper tribute or consideration. In the caption, Nicki added, “I’m sure MBJ didn’t intentionally do anything he thought Caribbean ppl would find offensive— but now that you are aware, change the name & continue to flourish & prosper.”
On Tuesday (June 22) evening, Jordan returned to Instagram with an apology. “I just wanna say on behalf of myself & my partners, our intention was never to offend or hurt a culture(we love & respect) & hoped to celebrate & shine a positive light on,” Jordan wrote.
“Last few days has been a lot of listening,” he continued. “A lot of learning & engaging in countless community conversations… We hear you. I hear you & want to be clear that we are in the process of renaming. We sincerely apologize & look forward to introducing a brand we can all be proud of.”