Supermarket chain Lidl has apologized for airbrushing Christian crosses out of images of the Greek island of Santorini on some of its food packaging, after being hit by criticism on social media.
The packaging of the Greek-themed Eridanous products, which include olive oil, Greek spice mixtures and baklava sweet pastries, depicts images of Santorini’s domed blue churches, but they are missing the crosses mounted on top.
“We are sorry for any offense caused by the artwork on our Eridanous range. We can confirm that we will be revising the design as soon as possible,” the German discounter said in a statement.
Lidl said its product design was not intended to convey any ideological standpoint.
“We made a mistake in the most recent revision of the product design and are now treating the issue with the highest priority,” Lidl said.
The images were widely criticized on social media. “We should all take pens into our local stores and draw crosses on the products! I won’t be shopping in Lidl’s anymore,” Irene Knight said on Lidl UK’s Facebook page, one of scores of such comments.
Lidl has expanded rapidly in Europe to become one of the continent’s biggest retailers. It now runs more than 10,000 stores in 27 countries in Europe and this year opened its first stores in the United States. [Reuters]