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'Mr Potato Head isn’t going anywhere', Hasbro says after gender neutral move
25 February 2021, 19:44 | Updated: 25 February 2021, 23:16
Mr Potato Head "isn’t going anywhere", Hasbro has announced after the company's move to drop pronouns from the famous toy.
The company had previously said that Mr and Mrs Potato Head will both become known as simply "Potato Head" to give the 70-year-old plaything a makeover and bring it in line with society's changing image.
But the manufacturer later posted an update on the decision, where it confirmed the pair will "remain Mr & Mrs Potato Head".
A spokesperson wrote on Twitter: "Hold that Tot – your main spud, MR. POTATO HEAD isn’t going anywhere!
"While it was announced today that the POTATO HEAD brand name & logo are dropping the ‘MR.’ I yam proud to confirm that MR. & MRS. POTATO HEAD aren’t going anywhere and will remain MR. & MRS. POTATO HEAD."
However, the brand name change will come into effect from the autumn, when Hasbro will sell Potato Head family kits.
Each pack will come with two non-gendered "adult" potatoes, one "baby" spud, and 42 accessories, allowing children to reflect what their own family looks like, whether it be traditional or non-traditional.
Hold that Tot – your main spud, MR. POTATO HEAD isn’t going anywhere! While it was announced today that the POTATO HEAD brand name & logo are dropping the ‘MR.’ I yam proud to confirm that MR. & MRS. POTATO HEAD aren’t going anywhere and will remain MR. & MRS. POTATO HEAD pic.twitter.com/6I84KrxOLQ— Hasbro (@Hasbro) February 25, 2021
The company said the old versions of the dolls will still "live on as part of the brand".
Earlier, Hasbro Senior Vice President Kimberly Boyd said the new changes were being brought in as Mr and Mrs Potato head's current gender identities were 'limiting' to children.
She told Fast Company: "Culture has evolved. Kids want to be able to represent their own experiences.
"The way the brand currently exists - with the 'Mr.' and 'Mrs.' - is limiting when it comes to both gender identity and family structure.'
"Kids like dressing up the toy, then playing out scenarios from their life. This often takes the form of creating little potato families, because they're learning what it means to be in a family."
The married couple were brought to life in the Toy Story franchise, in which Mr Potato Head would angrily demand characters remembered his title.
The plastic spud told Woody: "That's Mr Potato Head to you, you back-stabbing murderer," after the cowboy accidentally pushed Buzz Lightyear out a window.
The toy was first released to the masses in 1952 as a kit of parts and accessories like moustache and pipe which children could stick into a real potato to create a character.
Mrs Potato Head was born the following year with a feminine accessory kit including high heels and hair bows.
One million kits were sold in the first year alone, making them hugely popular.