MillerCoors has pulled a special edition can from shelves that featured the design of the Puerto Rican flag, following a backlash from Puerto Rican groups.
The can, which was designed for the New York City Puerto Rican Day Parade on June 9, hit shelves several weeks before the parade and despite criticism from groups, stayed on shelves until May 31.
While MillerCoors had initially stayed quiet, the company issued an apology to “Boricuas for a Positive Image,” an organization that had planned to protest one of its New York distributors.
“We apologize if the graphics on our promotional packaging inadvertently offended you or any other members of the Puerto Rican community,” Nehl Horton, chief public affairs and communications director for MillerCoors wrote in the letter, as quoted by the New York Times. “MillerCoors has a strong history of supporting the U.S. Latino community…”
The group released a statement explaining their disdain for the company, but also the parade planning committee for allowing its main sponsor to disrespect the flag.
Some groups and officials, including Councilwoman Melissa Mark-Viverito (District 8-D) are calling for those on the committee who approved the design to resign.
"I feel strongly at this time that the Board of Directors should resign and make room for new leadership for future parades," Viverito said in a statement.
This is not the first time the company has received criticism from Puerto Rican groups. Two years ago, the company received disapproval and took down advertisements that read "Emborícuate," which means
, "become Puerto Rican."