Executives at Forever 21 have apologised for sending diet bars with plus-size clothing orders.
In recent days, a number of unimpressed customers have taken to Twitter to share their concern over receiving a sample Atkins Lemon snack bar with their order, with many noting that they had purchased plus-size clothing online.
Critics accused the label of appearing to body-shame customers, and on Tuesday, bosses issued a statement apologising for any offence caused by the promotion.
“From time to time, Forever 21 surprises our customers with free test products from third parties in their e-commerce orders,” they said. “The freebie items in question were included in all online orders, across all sizes and categories, for a limited time and have since been removed. This was an oversight on our part and we sincerely apologise for any offense this may have caused to our customers, as this was not our intention in any way.”
While the Atkins Lemon bar is not labelled as a weight loss product, the company is known for the Atkins diet, a low-carbohydrate eating plan devised by Dr. Robert Atkins.
In light of the feedback, a representative for the Atkins brand also released a statement and claimed that the company was “focused on a lifestyle nutritional approach where everyone can benefit from overall health and wellbeing.”
However, it seems that bosses at Forever 21 are going to have to do some serious damage control, as several customers have used social media to express their anger at receiving the free bar.
One user commented, “@Forever21 why are you sending out Atkins bars with your plus-size orders? It’s hella fatphobic, insensitive, and harmful to everyone involved. Diet culture continues to thrive because of companies like you who ‘subtly’ shove it down people’s throats. please address this,” while another added: “Apparently @Forever21 sends out Atkins bars with all of its orders, which sends a wildly dangerous message to ALL of its customers. Not only is it fatshaming, it could also trigger people of all sizes who have EDs (eating disorders). This is as dangerous as it is inappropriate.”
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