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Rice row: Jamie Oliver faces backlash over jerk product

IN HOT WATER: Jamie Oliver has been criticised for his new "jerk rice" product

CELEBRITY CHEF Jamie Oliver is under fire over his new "jerk rice".

Critics have accused Oliver of cultural appropriation and highlighted the inauthenticity of his latest food product.

Labour MP and shadow secretary of state for women and equalities, Dawn Butler, said: “I'm just wondering do you know what Jamaican jerk actually is? It's not just a word you put before stuff to sell products. Levi Roots should do a masterclass. Your jerk Rice is not ok. This appropriation from Jamaica needs to stop.”

Chef and Reggae Reggae Sauce creator Levi Roots appeared on Good Morning Britain today to speak on the issue, which he called a “mistake” by Oliver’s team.

He revealed that he had in fact taught Oliver how to cook Jerk the authentic way.

Some people have accused Butler of overreacting but she has also received support.

One Twitter user, Regina Holland, said: “There's no such thing as jerk rice apart from what Jamie Oliver has concocted. That's her point. Anybody from any nationality can eat anything they want, there are just some dishes that are best left alone and enjoyed how they're supposed to be made.”

TV chef Rustie Lee, who also appeared on Good Morning Britain with Roots, said: “Jerk chicken, jerk pork and jerk fish and jerk beef originates from Jamaica and the people who have this, it’s their thing.”

She said Jamaicans would be offended by Oliver’s product.

She added: “It’s an insult because jerk is from the Caribbean. As much as I love Jamie the point is it’s getting on to a bandwagon to say it’s caribbean, it’s taking away from us.”

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