A Canadian beer brand and a leather company in New Zealand have been criticised after being told that they had accidentally named themselves after the Māori word for pubic hair.
Hell’s Basement named its New Zealand Pale Ale "Huruhuru" while a shop in Wellington, New Zealand named itself Huruhuru as well.
However, te reo Māori exponent Te Hamua Nikora, shared a video on Facebook calling the leather shop out.
After approaching the shop and asking what they thought it meant, they replied “feather”.
Nikora explained that while the word does mean “feather” it also means “pubic hair”.
A spokesperson for Huruhuru the leather shop said they did not mean any offence by the name of their outlet, which they had intended to mean wool, feather, or fur.
In Nikora’s video, he went on to say that he then came across Hell’s Basement’s Huruhuru beer, which he criticised as being disrespectful along with the name of the leather shop.
“If you are selling leather, call it leather, don’t call it pubic hair unless you are selling pubic hair and don’t call beer pubic hair unless you make it with pubic hair,” he said.
Hell’s Basement co-founder, Mike Patriquin, said in response that their intended interpretation of the term was also feather and that the full name of the beer is “Huruhuru (the Feather) New Zealand Hopped Pale Ale”.
“We did not realise the potential to offend through our artistic interpretation, and given the response we will attempt to do better in the future,” Patriquin said, later adding that they are considering rebranding their beer in the future.
“We wish to make especially clear that it was not our intent to infringe upon, appropriate, or offend the Māori culture or people in any way; to those who feel disrespected, we apologise,” he added.
“We also do not think pubic hair is shameful, though we admit it may not go well with beer. We are all human after all!”