Food & Wine
Woolworths accused of “disgusting” Anzac biscuit scandal
Woolworths has rejected claims it renamed Anzac biscuits after social media outrage caused by a recent recipe in one of its catalogues.
Posts appearing on Facebook and Twitter suggested the supermarket giant had succumbed to “cancel culture” by removing the word Anzac from its biscuit recipes.
In the lead-up to Anzac Day, Woolworths featured a recipe for Golden Oat Biscuits in one of its catalogues.
Noticing the striking similarity between the oat biscuits and the traditional Anzac biscuits, one person claimed, “Woolworths in their woke wisdom has changed the name of Anzac biscuits calling them golden oats because it may insult some people.”
Another shopper claimed the name change was “disgusting and a slap in the face for our Anzacs”, vowing to never shop at the supermarket again.
Clarification came when a spokesperson told Yahoo News Australia the biscuits were not called Anzac Day biscuits out of respect for the strict guidelines set by the Department of Veterans’ Affairs.
“The Department of Veterans’ Affairs has strict regulations around the word Anzac and how it can be used on products or in marketing,” they said.
“We didn’t have the relevant approvals to use the term for this particular recipe placement in the catalogue and wanted to ensure we respected the regulations.”
Companies considering using the word Anzac in their products need to be approved by the department first, which Woolworths did not pursue in this instance.
Yahoo News Australia understands the Golden Oat Biscuits recipe has featured in previous catalogues.
The spokesperson reiterated Anzac biscuits were still available to purchase and had been approved for sale, with proceeds helping raise funds for veterans and their families.
Yahoo News Australia also reached out to the Department of Veterans’ Affairs to clarify on what the approved recipe is and whether Woolworths recipe would have been approved if an application had been submitted.
Comparing a 2014 recipe published by the department against the Woolworths recipe, both recipes feature the same ingredients but they use varying measures.
According to the guidelines, “The use of the word ‘Anzac’ in the commercial production and sale of Anzac biscuits is usually approved, however the biscuits must not substantially deviate from the generally accepted recipe and shape, and must be referred to as ‘Anzac Biscuits’”.
The biscuits must avoid any additions such as chocolate chips and must not be called cookies.
Image credit: Woolworths