Here are a few things that go really well with your morning cup of coffee: milk, sugar, the newspaper, maybe a donut or two. Something that doesn’t go down as easy with your daily cuppa joe? Hitler.
A Swiss company has apologized after a commuter discovered the Führer’s face on a mini container of creamer at a Swiss train station. The New York Times reports that Migros, the company that produces the creamer packets, has recalled around 2,000 dictator-themed containers from coffee shops in the Graubunden region of Switzerland, calling the mix-up a “unforgivable incident.”
Tristan Cerf, a spokesman for Migros, said by telephone from Lausanne on Wednesday that the company had been horrified by the failure of its internal controls to detect the images on its cream containers.
It turns out that Hitler wasn’t the only fascist to get his time in the milky spotlight: some of Migros’ creamers also boasted portraits of Mussolini.
The dairy debacle occurred when Migros asked a subsidiary company to supply a set of limited edition coffee creamers based on vintage cigar labels. Some of the old cigar labels featured portraits of Hitler and Mussolini, and they slipped past the company’s controls. Apparently the large green text spelling out “HITLER” in block letters failed to catch anyone’s attention.
“I can’t tell you how these labels got past our controls,” a spokesperson for the company, which seems genuinely horrified, said. “Usually the labels have pleasant images like trains, landscapes and dogs—nothing polemic that can pose a problem.”
The company plans to tighten up its controls process, so Swiss coffee lovers can rest assured they won’t be seeing Hitler’s face in the morning anytime soon.
Brigit Katz is an editorial intern at Tablet.