Superwoke Meghan Markle and Prince Harry slammed for deal with P&G that makes millions selling 'whitening' cream
The Sussexes have yet another controversy to their name after they signed a global partnership with Procter & Gamble. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced that their Archewell Foundation had entered an alliance with US multinational P&G to "build more compassionate communities". They have now come under fire for liaising with the conglomerate which reportedly makes millions of dollars every year selling "racist" skin-whitening creams.
The deal has shone a light on the highly controversial sale of these creams in Asia and Africa which contribute to reducing the concentration or production of melanin, a natural pigment that is responsible for giving the human skin its color. There have been many activists who have participated in mass campaigns seeking a halt on the production of these products by P&G and other firms.
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In her interview with Oprah Winfrey for CBS, Meghan had expressed that she and her then-unborn child had faced colorism while living at the palace. Fast forward to today, this deal definitely has got people talking. Joanne Rondilla, a professor at San Jose State University who has researched skin-lightening in the Philippines says the Sussexes aren't setting the right example by not raising their voices against these products by P&G.
"Like everyone else around the world, I saw that interview with Oprah that Meghan did," Rondilla said. "It was important for her to bring up these issues of colorism. I don't think this partnership advances that conversation," she added. A former executive with P&G Alex Malouf pointed out that Meghan and Harry stand to face pressure to say whether they support the production and sale of such products. "Meghan has talked a lot about the issue of race and racism, so this does stick out like a sore thumb," Malouf said.
It is said that products of this type are responsible for fueling a toxic belief that a person's success is noted by their fair skin tone and that light skin is better than dark. An investigation has found that Olay — a major P&G skincare brand sells white radiance moisturizer in three major countries in Asia. The message that the product propagates that it delivers "radiant and brighter skin" has been considered problematic.
There have been a lot of petitions against P&G and other corporates urging them to stop selling whitening creams, one of which was launched by Miss America Nina Davuluri who is the first Indian-American to win the pageant. She believes skin whitening products sell a "racist" ideology that "you need white skin to be beautiful, you need white skin to be successful."
Prince Harry is an environment and wildlife advocate who has yet to raise his voice against P&G for their ties to FGV Holdings, some imports from which the US State Customs and Border Protection has banned following an investigation that yielded indications of sexual violence, abusive working and living condition of workers amongst other reasons.
"The fact that P&G has continued to be complicit in human rights abuses, in environmental devastation, is reason enough why this partnership shouldn't be formed or shouldn't continue. It showed that full due diligence on the company was not done," Robin Averbeck from Rainforest Action Network said. P&G has not commented on any of the questions about their skin whitening creams or their ties to FGV Holdings.
However, in a statement, they said, "At P&G, we are committed to doing the right thing across all aspects of our business — without exception. Doing more and doing better is important for us all — for our company, in our communities and for our planet."