The Country Road tote bag with colours representin
The Country Road tote bag with colours representing South Africa's old flag (Reddit, u/CoenieOosthuysen)
  • Woolworths has apologised for a tote bag sold with colours similar to the former South African national flag. 
  • Woolworths said it regrets that the colours caused offence, and pulled the bag from sale. 
  • Meanwhile Truworths said lighter and darker mannequins grouped together in a store display was not intended to reflect its consumers. 
  • For more stories, go to the Business Insider SA homepage.

Woolworths has apologised for a tote bag it sold in South Africa with colours similar to the former national flag under apartheid. 

This in the same week as Truworths said lighter and darker mannequins placed together in a store display had not been intended to reflect the customer identity of its brands.  

The Country Road Logo Tote bag was spotted by Reddit South Africa users on Monday. It featured Country Road branding with the colours orange, white and blue. 

South Africa’s national flag under apartheid also featured orange, white, and blue, and was known as Oranje, Blanje, Blou in Afrikaans.

Country Road is owned by Woolworths. 

Speaking to Business Insider South Africa, Country Road said it regrets that the applications of its seasonal colours have caused offence, and has pulled the bags from sale. The bag was designed in Australia.

It said the Country Road signature Logo Tote is characterised by its five-stripe design and updated seasonally in new colours.

Also read: Take a look: Inside Checkers' brand new flagship store in Sandton, designed to take on Woolworths

The Country Road seasonal colours for summer are Azure Blue, Marshmallow, Orange, Baby Blue and Navy, it said. 

“[We] offer our sincerest apologies to all our South African customers. It is never our intention to cause offence and we have decided to discontinue sales of this item,” Country Road said. 

Meanwhile, Truworths said lighter and darker mannequins in a store’s display window in Pretoria was done to display merchandise and not reflect the customer identity of the Truworths brands. 

In a social media post, shared on Monday, a Truworths store display window was shared with lighter mannequins placed under the Daniel Hetcher brand, and darker mannequins placed under the Uzzi brand.

Daniel Hetcher is considered a more expensive brand than Uzzi. 

“The selection of the mannequins we use in our windows and on our shop floors, is by no means selected to reflect South African society or the customer identity of Truworths brands Daniel Hechter and Uzzi,’ Truworths told Business Insider. 

A previous version of this article said that the tote bag had been sold in Australia and not locally.

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