People are praising 'beautiful' Sainsbury's Christmas advert featuring Black family following social media abuse

Victoria Bell
·3-min read

Watch: Sainsbury’s Christmas advert: Gravy Song

People are praising Sainsbury’s for a “beautiful” Christmas advert featuring an all-Black family, despite backlash against the company from some social media users.

The advert, one of three revealed by the supermarket giant on Twitter, shows home footage of a Black family enjoying Christmas dinner pre-coronavirus.

The one-minute clip, titled Gravy Song, is set to audio of a phone conversation between a father and his daughter talking about how much they want to see each other at Christmas.

They lament over “Mum’s roasties” and “Dad’s famous gravy”. The daughter is heard saying: “Your gravy is good to be fair and... I just really want to be home for it.”

The ad shows an all-Black family celebrating Christmas. (Sainsbury's)
The ad shows an all-Black family celebrating Christmas. (Sainsbury's)

The ad, which was created with a “focus on celebrating how food can connect people”, Sainsbury’s said, was criticised by some Twitter users.

Some commentators argued that the ad “did not represent them”, and some even threatened to boycott the supermarket for perceived “virtue-signalling”.

Read more: 'Mr Christmas' dies on eve of turning on his lights – so daughter does it for him

Sainsbury’s replied: “We wanted to focus on celebrating how food can connect people, whether they're physically together or not and this captures it perfectly!”

“At Sainsbury's, we want to be the most inclusive retailer. That's why, throughout all our advertising we aim to represent a modern Britain, which has a diverse range of communities. We have three stories of three different families in our advertising.”

The ad is titled the Gravy Song and we hear a dad and daughter discussing Christmas. (Sainsbury's)
The ad is titled the Gravy Song and we hear a dad and daughter discussing Christmas. (Sainsbury's)

In contrast to the critics, social media users praised the supermarket for promoting diversity.

One person said the “beautiful advert” brought a tear to his eye.

Another wrote: “With all the other Christmas ads mostly featuring interracial couples/families it's nice that you have done a black family a dark skinned one at that! Who you rarely see on T.V, thank you.”

Read more: Christmas could cause a third wave of COVID, French hospital director warns

A third agreed, writing: “Good work Sainsbury’s, no one sensible is bothered by adverts involving people not of their skin colour.”

This is the first time Sainsbury's has released more than one ad at Christmas.

The second – called Perfect Portions, which came out on Monday – features a white mother and son sharing memories of past Christmases.

Read more: Festive period could lead to 'three super-spreading events'

The final ad, Big Sarnie, is out on Thursday 19 November.

Each advert has the same catchline: “Food is home, home is Christmas.”

Sainsburys said: “We want to be the most inclusive retailer where colleagues love to work and customers love to shop. We are proud that our advertising represents the diverse communities we serve and our Christmas campaign features three stories of three different families.

“Sainsbury's is for everyone and it’s important to us that our advertising reflects this.”

Watch: Sainsbury's Christmas advert: Perfect Portions