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No Nutella for Isis: girl (5) refused personalised jar because name is associated with terrorist group

Published 27/11/2015

Nutella's parent company said personalising the jar with the name Isis could be viewed as inappropriate
Nutella's parent company said personalising the jar with the name Isis could be viewed as inappropriate

A mother has been left outraged after Nutella refused to personalise one of its jars with the name of her daughter, Isis, because it is now so associated with the terrorist group.

Heather Taylor, from Illawarra, south of Sydney, named her five-year-old after the Egyptian goddess, known in mythology for being an ideal mother and wife. 

But the 43-year-old told the Sydney Morning Herald that she is “starting to get to the point where I don’t want to call her name out” as people link it to militants belonging to the Islamic State, also known as the acronym Isis.

And Nutella confirmed the negative association when Ms Taylor’s sister requested a personalised jar for her niece, as part of a campaign the spread company is running.

Myers, the department store she visited to order the jar, said it could not produce one because of the name Isis’s association with the Islamic State group.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Myer told Ms Taylor that Nutella had produced a protocol for acceptable names, with the chief executive of Nutella’s parent company Ferrero Australia also contacting her the next day to stand by the company’s decision.

“I’m really quite upset by this,” Ms Taylor told him.

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“You are actually making my daughter’s name dirty.  You are choosing to refuse my daughter’s name in case the public refers to it negatively.

Islamic State (IS) has also come to be known as Isis (the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria), as well as Isil (the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant).  The group is also known as Daesh.

Last week, Conservative MP Rehman Chishti wrote to Prime Minister David Cameron, calling on the Government to start using the name Daesh to refer to the group.

In June, Mr Cameron had asked the BBC to stop calling it “Islamic State”.  He refers to the group as Isil.

Ferrero Australia told Ms Taylor there were times when a label could be refused “on the basis that it could have been misinterpreted by the broader community or viewed as inappropriate”.

Writing on her Facebook page, Ms Taylor said the experience was “more reason for the media to stop calling Daesh Isis”.

“This negative publicity of such a beautiful name needs to stop now.  My five-year-old is already being discriminated through no fault of her own.”

Ms Taylor told the newspaper that she had to stop her daughter from seeing any news reports mentioning “Isis”.


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