Germany – “Sexist sausages” are causing quite the stir in Deutschland this week. With sexualized images on the packaging and suggestive “sizes,” everyone from journalists to good old fashioned feminists are crying foul.
The packaging on these sexist sausages is gender-specific, and the “Frauen” sausages are described as “lean” and are half the size of the “Männer” sausages, which are marketed as “hearty” and “strong-spiced.”
The sausages were largely ignored by German media, but a blog post by feminist journalist and political scientist Antje Schrupp criticized the brand for its marketing and pricing (the “Fraun” versions, for instance, are significantly more expensive).
The packaging is also under fire. The male brand features an attractive, scantily-clad woman against a flaming background, while the female brand features a topless, muscle-bound man against a cloudy background.
Schrupp quoted a letter of complaint written by fellow journalist Susanne Enz, which criticized the sausages for “dull sexism.”
She said that the sausages’ marketing implied that “men eat a lot and heartily, while women mainly want to be thin… Women are there to please, while men are allowed to enjoy.”
“Of course it’s not the end of the world, it’s just a sausage,” she admitted.
“Of course you can react to it as if it’s just a joke, and presumably most sausage-buyers will do that. But your choice of name and accompanying advertising is still the expression and promotion of a – in the best case – thoughtless normative sexism, which gives each gender a ‘right’ role to play, with a built-in hierarchy.”
“I found the whole thing really quite unbearable, and I showed it to my partner, and she got really angry,” Enz later recalled.
The sausage company did not respond to the allegations of sexism, merely saying that the female brand is more expensive because they offer higher quality meat and vegetables.
“It’s a general problem,” Schrupp said of the sexist sausages. “I’ve seen women’s and men’s mustard as well. Often for children, of course.”
[Image via: Page Frederique / Shutterstock]