Burger King was grilled on social media, Monday, after its UK division tweeted this on International Women’s Day: “Women belong in the kitchen.”
The faux pas was followed up with an attempt at an explanation when BurgerKingUK then tweeted: "...only 20% of chefs are women. We're on a mission to change the gender ratio in the restaurant industry…’
But the damage was already done. Twitter users fired back, some, calling the tweet ‘tone-deaf’ and pledged not to eat at the burger chain. Others made jokes.
One user tweeted: "There’s better ways to draw attention to something that don’t include using the most sexist trope ever."
In a written statement, Burger King said "Our tweet in the UK today was designed to draw attention to the fact that only a small percentage of chefs and head chefs are women. It was our mistake to not include the full explanation in our initial tweet.”
New York brand expert, Allen Adamson says Burger King tried too hard to be clever.
"Challenge of a tweet - it stands on its own. It's not the beginning of a conversation, it's usually the entire conversation. So, saying 'women belong in the kitchen' is the punch line and the headline that's now linked to the Burger King brand, and it's not something they wanted linked to the Burger King brand. They tried to be too clever and too creative.”
Hours later, the fast food chain was still trying to clean up the mess, tweeting: “We hear you. We got our initial tweet wrong and we’re sorry.”