A London cafe has been found to sell a “Nazi inspired”, nut based smoothie, called “Nutzy”. While the name by itself may be innocent, the fact the label featured a prominent swastika was not.
According to Campaign Against AntiSemitism, a Jewish woman contacted them on 16 November after she had entered Nim Com Soup at Old Street Tube Station in London only to discover a nut based smoothie called “Nutzy” emblazoned with a swastika.
After discovering the drink, she went to the counter to discuss this with staff and they called their manager.
“He explained that it was an inverted swastika which was a Hindu symbol of health and prosperity, which is indeed right but the swastika was not inverted, and the Hindu sign includes dots within the symbol. When I asked about the name of the drink, he said it was a play on ‘having the nuts’, meaning ‘having the courage’ and was a pun as the drink contains nuts. I told him how offensive that was for certain people. He asked why I would find that so offensive, to which I responded that I lost my family to the Nazi regime and that despite the Hindu use of the symbol, this along with the name of the drink was extremely offensive. He said that London is a free city.”
“I left the shop almost in tears and shivering as it proved to me how much antisemitism and fascism is still utterly present. That man had no shame whatsoever to tell me that I should not be offended by what I saw, when the use of the swastika and the name of that drink is clearly not a coincidence.”
Campaign Against Antisemitism sent volunteers from their investigation team to visit the shop in the days following. They found that “Nutzy” was still listed on the shelf, but that it was out of stock. The following Monday “Nutzy” was back in stock, but this time the swastika had been replaced with an image of the Pope waving.
Judging by the name of the cafe, the product was likely meant as a bit of fun, or as a joke. However, there is nothing funny about what Hitler and his Nazi regime did, including the killing of 6 million Jews.
The response of the manager and the fact the product now features an image of the Pope displays an attitude of mockery and a lack of respect for certain religious groups. While making light of Nazism is not a criminal offence, CAS is pursuing this case by contacting the landlord for the shop (Transport for London), as well as raising awareness through the media to see if any action can be taken or to prompt an apology from the store.