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Uncle Brian's

In an effort to restore its image as a nurturing and wholesome company, Threadbone Heavy Chemicals is indulging in a little re-branding, changing the face of some of its most popular - but controversial - consumer brands, better to reflect its origins as a small-scale supplier of provender to the importunate [see below].

Hoping for a significant post-pandemic bounce-back, company executives are aware that "big Pharma" is not exactly flavour of the month and are looking to the past to rehabilitate and domesticate the giant multi-national's image. "We are of course indisputably a Gemeinschaft organisation but one with Gesellschaft roots and ambitions", Brand Manager Di Sinn-Jenuous said at the launch. "We want to recapture the innocence of earlier times - for example the good old colonial period when everyone - be they high or low born - knew their place and how big or small a cog they were in the organisation as a whole. It was a pre-pandemic era in which the biggest threat was a good beating or perhaps expulsion from the plantation. No one worried about being locked-down, trick and trapped or forcibly inoculated and transport and accommodation on the whole were the opposite of socially distanced. Though it may have been a little harsh at times, it was a world of certainties and our research suggests that's what the market wants just now".

Te product of an era in which food shortages and social non-distancing was "par for the course", the Dorset Utility Foods Co-operative's produce line was an attempt to provide basic nutrition at an affordable price. How things change!

First in line for the rebrand is the Brian's Original line - a microwaveable ersatz rice substitute guaranteed to fill the kids.**. Now styled Uncle Brian's, the packaging features a kindly-faced but wizened old man who appears to have survived pretty well on the content of the packet. "Homely, kind and inviting - if just a tad patronising - Uncle Brian represents everything we are looking to promote in the new marketing image", a spokesperson for PR and Marketing experts Charles and Maurice MacPro said. "He's clearly enjoyed many days of hard, back-breaking labour in the fields and very little pay yet appears well-nourished and pretty content with life. He's a reminder of how good life can be when - even if the life-work balance is a tad askew - you think right and budget well. I mean, who wouldn't buy rice from this man?

As always with the Threadbone Corporation, the rebrand and relaunch will be supported by a big budget advertising campaign, described by the Charles and Maurice MacPro people as "unmissable".

Uncle Brian - a reassuring image which recalls the certainties of the much misunderstood "colonial" era.

** with chemicals, artificial flavourings, steroids and barely-legal preservatives [Ed]

* Our Consumer Foods Editor E. Talyucan writes:

Readers may be unaware that the Dorset Utility Foods Co-operative [founded in Long Bredy in 1946] and acquired by the Threadbone Corporation in 2002 was a community-based enterprise the aim of which was to provide good quality food to those suffering the long term effects of wartime rationing [for a comparison see Long CONTRIK and why I still can't satisfy the needs of my 22 year old Thai bride, Sydling St Nicholas Sun 20 April 2021]. It found itself in serious financial trouble in 1999 following a routine investigation by the Dorset Hazardous Substances Authority [DHSA] [not to be confused with the DHRS which is toxic in a quite different fashion]. The enterprise struggled until 2002 when it was bought for 1p by The Threadbone Corporation which was keen to acquire its grinding mills, mechanically-recovered meat facility, distribution network and reputation for "lowering expectations whilst steadily increasing its prices".

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