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A New Zealand pizza chain is getting some international attention for a billboard that uses real dead rabbits. That has lead to complaints on Facebook, but the chain, called Hell Pizza, is defending the marketing tactic.
The billboard reads “New for Easter” above the chain’s name, then has the slogan “Made from real rabbit. Just like this billboard.” According to Time, the billboard is meant to specifically advertise a new pizza that features “smoked wild NZ rabbit, toasted pine nuts, beetroot & horopito relish, cream cheese, rosemary & garnished with fresh spring onions.”
Hell Pizza has been quick to respond to concerns on Facebook, trying to educate non-New Zealanders about the facts of rabbits in the country. “As well as being a delicious meat, and even quite cute, rabbits are unfortunately also a noted pest that is damaging to the New Zealand environment, particularly in the South Island,” the company pointed out on Thursday.
The company noted where the rabbits came from, writing, “For those who are concerned, we sourced these rabbit skins via a professional animal tanning company, who in turn sourced them from local meat processing companies where the skins are a regular by-product.”
When that statement didn’t seem to work, the company began posting “Quick Rabbit Facts,” explaining that the USDA says that rabbit meat is the most nutritious meat for humans. In one post today, the company noted that rabbits are considered pets in New Zealand and can legally be hunted.
Hell Pizza is notorious for controversial marketing schemes, including mailing out condoms. Just like those previous schemes, this one certainly has caught everyone’s attention.
Image via Facebook from Hell Pizza