Woolies facing wrath over hot cross buns

2012-03-29 09:26

Cape Town - Woolworths is facing criticism from a few Christians for putting a Halaal certification mark on its hot cross buns, but a bishop has labelled it "nothing more than a storm in a baking pan".

The Cape Times reported on Thursday that people had written e-mails and used social networking sites to voice disapproval of the use of a Muslim mark on a food that had special significance for Christians.

One Christian wrote on Woolworths Facebook wall: “Ja, its sad to hear the woolies we supported all these years turned their backs on Christians.

“Really disappointed. Lucky we received that email, man its spreading like a wild fire. Proud to say a few people I know are boycotting W, including me [sic].”

Another wrote: “I hate woolworths... How can you do that to the Christians, I hope that God will have mercy on you. And dnt be surprised if your shops run bankrupt.. I will pray to my living God and you will see what he is capable of! [sic]”

SA Catholic Bishops' Conference spokesperson Chris Townsend said people were overreacting and needed to be more understanding.

"Hot cross buns are only a symbol, and not a central tenet of Christianity. There are a lot more weighty issues to deal with in SA than a few 'hot cross Christians'," he was quoted as saying.

The food chain apologised for the upset and said it would release separate buns in future - non-Halaal certified hot cross buns and Halaal certified spiced buns.

- Where do you stand on this topic? Share your thoughts with us. .

  • Goempie - 2012-03-29 10:22

    Does anyone remember that a few years ago Woolies wanted to take all Christian magazines of their shelves?

      christina.engela - 2012-03-29 11:37

      So what? When last have you seen a Muslim magazine on their shelves? Or a Hindu publication? Or a Pagan magazine? This is a secular state, but only Christian culture is allowed to be promoted?

      Goempie - 2012-03-29 15:59

      Just saying. They did no say they will take all Muslim mags off the rack, just Christian.

      Goempie - 2012-03-29 16:02

      I really don't care about the hotcross bun thing. I don't eat it any why. I'm just reminding people that this is not so bad as removing mags. If there was a market for pagan mags, Woolies would have sold it. it is all about the money!

  • meredith.r.pollock - 2012-03-29 10:24

    As a Christian I find it totally unacceptable that so-called Christians are saying that they will now pray against woolworths and hope they go bankrupt etc etc, that is certainly not Christian like at all, since when do you as a Christian ask the Almighty God for bad things to happen others, come on do you really think God is going to bankrupt a business putting hundreds if not thousands of people out of work because you have a little gripe about how a business does business. I'm sorry but Christians who wish harm on others are certainly not real Christians, if you are unhappy with Woolies then just don't shop there. I know my God is a God of love not a God of harm.. Wow, you Christians that are believing for negative things to happen to Woolies etc are certainly allowing the devil to get his foot in the door in your own lives, be careful what you are sowing as you will be the one to reap what comes out of your own mouth... Just saying....

      Chris - 2012-03-29 23:44

      Absolutely! As a Christian one should always turn the bun.( I mean cheek.)

      Mary - 2012-03-31 20:03

      Well, prayer has been shown to be little more than Wishful Thinking, so Woollies will simply prosper, and righfully so.

  • Ashliegh - 2012-03-29 10:25

    hoekom jy optree soos Christene as jy jou gedra, soos die duiwel se kos is kos in die Bybel is nie waar sy geskryf Christene moet nie eet nie hahal of moet eet halal

      Llewellyn - 2012-03-30 08:51


      Mary - 2012-03-31 20:06

      Christene, neem kennis: Julle mag niks meer eet nie, want alle kos word deur nie-christene geproduseer en verwerk. Medisyne ook.

  • janzanele - 2012-03-29 10:25

    i'm christians,but i'm dissapointed about the remarks made by christians.we worship the same God,truely speaking it's shows that we christians are greedy,cruel and selfcentred,instead we should pray for the sick,drugs abuse,rapes and killing.we engage ourselves in such nuisance,that why the verse says "many are called,but few are choosen" shame on you

  • janzanele - 2012-03-29 10:25

    i'm christians,but i'm dissapointed about the remarks made by christians.we worship the same God,truely speaking it's shows that we christians are greedy,cruel and selfcentred,instead we should pray for the sick,drugs abuse,rapes and killing.we engage ourselves in such nuisance,that why the verse says "many are called,but few are choosen" shame on you

  • janzanele - 2012-03-29 10:25

    i'm christians,but i'm dissapointed about the remarks made by christians.we worship the same God,truely speaking it's shows that we christians are greedy,cruel and selfcentred,instead we should pray for the sick,drugs abuse,rapes and killing.we engage ourselves in such nuisance,that why the verse says "many are called,but few are choosen" shame on you

  • Genesistt - 2012-03-29 10:27

    I can't believe this. Isn't there more important things in the world to fight against? Like world hunger or mass genocide or the killing off of thousands of animal and plant species? It's a hot cross bun for pete's sake. Not a holy communion wafer! At least now the Muslims can also safely enjoy it along with the rest of us.

  • Richard - 2012-03-29 10:28

    This has to be some of the funniest sh1t I have ever read... It should be deemed blasphemous to eat hot cross buns in the first place...

  • Mandy - 2012-03-29 10:29

    This is the most pathetic thing I have ever heard of. Come on, Xtians! Get a life!!!

  • Mike - 2012-03-29 10:29

    here are some of the reason why christians shouldnt eat halal pagan god blessed food. (1 Corinthians 10:20).(Daniel 10:12-14,20,21).(Exodus 20:3).

      robbie.crouch - 2012-03-29 14:46

      Mike, look up the history of the bun in the first place, based on that you will not even eat if if you consider 1 Corinthians 10:20 Then you quote Daniel as well? And Exodus I can again refer to my first sentence. Then again we have Genesis where God says we may eat anything and Peter's vision. These point out that food is not the issue, it is what comes out of the heart that matters.

  • Malusi - 2012-03-29 10:29

    Dear Christian; in my humble view as a Christian, I THINK THIS IS THE DUMMEST THING TO BE CONCERNED ABOUT AS A CHRISTIAN! Biblically speaking you don't have any reason whatsoever to be worried about halaal hotcross buns:(. Repent and stop behaving like heathens!

  • Stuart - 2012-03-29 10:29

    Bwah ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha...

  • Haan - 2012-03-29 10:29

    "The wrath of angry Christians". So what else is new?

      jpstrauss - 2012-03-29 17:45

      I don't see any burning stores, do you?

      Chris - 2012-03-29 23:46

      The chopping off of heads and burning at stakes would not be new.

      Mary - 2012-03-31 20:13

      "The wrath of angry Christians" = exploding Hot X buns, or explosive laden Easter Bunnies ??

  • wayne.jubber - 2012-03-29 10:30

    Why would Muslims want to eat food that celebrates a holy christian holiday weird if you ask me but i think that anything edible that is used in Eid-ul-Fitr celebrations should then have the holy cross stamped on it. Hows that for wisdom simple and easily explained and sorted sometimes i marvel at my own wisdom :0)

  • Elsabe - 2012-03-29 10:30

    Easter is not about easter eggs and hot cross buns! It's about God's son that died on the cross for our sins.

      Llewellyn - 2012-03-30 08:53

      The hot cross?

      Mary - 2012-03-31 20:14

      Which god ??

  • Jonathan - 2012-03-29 10:31

    This is great! I love it when South Africans over react. I have shares in Pick n Pay so down with Woolies!

  • mike.bishton - 2012-03-29 10:32

    Why should Woolies even consider having 2 variants? Surely if something is deemed Halaal or Kosher...then it's cool for Christians also? Surely having two variants would incur a production cost - which we'll pay for in the end. By the way, thumbs up to Woolies anyway for marking the product Halaal so even more people can share in the symbolic delicacy, which I think would be the Christan thing to do.

  • tiaan.fourie - 2012-03-29 10:32

    So typical. Find something better to do with your time Christians. The world does not revolve around you!

      J-Man - 2012-03-29 11:10

      You cannot blame them...according to them, the earth is the center of the universe.

      Ed - 2012-03-29 11:29

      i think that it may also be flat...

      Ed - 2012-03-29 11:30

      oh, also only 5500 years old...

      Shaun - 2012-03-29 11:57

      And God made dinasaur fossils to confuse us

      Matthew - 2012-03-29 14:43

      @Shaun - you will burn for such heresy! It was satan (aka the talking snake) who invented dinosaur bones, Darwin, Dawkins, etc etc etc, not god! God so loved the world that he spent the better part of the bible smiting, enslaving and genociding (I think that is a verb) entire nations of people, just because they weren't circumsised etc etc.

  • Mark - 2012-03-29 10:33

    It is beyond me why buns need a halaal cert?in a population of 50m and 1m muslims it is amazing how Woolworths can succumb to such triviality?I would like to know how much they had to pay to put the sticker on?halaal stickers on buns,on cereals etc,what next?halaal stickers on clothes,alcohol,seafood,or maybe even Pork?Considering the way they eat crayfish,which is regarded as the pig of the sea?Can't our people and corporates take a stand?His halaal certification is nothing but a scam!

      Stormkaap - 2012-03-29 10:37

      By whom is the crayfish considered the pig of the sea..I find the comments childish and pathetic and contary to the constitution that enshrines the rights of minorities. You're nothing but a small mided idiot

      Stormkaap - 2012-03-29 10:38

      Actually youre still a kid.. read the Beano and Bambi

      Ed - 2012-03-29 11:33

      shoh mark....i just found ANOTHER one of adolph hitlers relatives aloive and well. hang your head in shame simpleton. PS: maybe you should join the awb youth league, they need a new leader.

      Rohin - 2012-03-29 14:09

      Mark - I've vegetarian, and I'm no doubt in the minority - but does that mean they can't label the food accordingly so that I know it fits in with my requirements? Are hot cross buns strictly for the consumption of Christians alone? I think not. If you're Christian eat the darn thing and place whatever value you want on it, but surely if someone else wants to eat it, they should be advised accordingly. In the same way if it contains nuts - it should have a warning for those with nut allergies. I'm starting to understand why there are so many Atheists around. How does having a friggin' sticker on your buns make it any less important to you. And you're concerned now about the cost of sticking a sticker on - consider the cost now if they to separate them - create 2 different types of packaging - guess who's going to absorb the cost.

      Shamier - 2012-03-29 14:32

      Muslims have spending power. Sure remove those 1m from a large part of the economy and see what happens...

      glen.e.huysamer - 2012-03-30 17:51

      Yep it is all a scam and should be completely outlawed in South Africa, and or the payment of such certification should be outlawed and or the payment should be taxed and not be regarded as a religious certification. It would be interesting to see how long this scam would last if the government banned the payment of such certification.

  • Mark - 2012-03-29 10:33

    It is beyond me why buns need a halaal cert?in a population of 50m and 1m muslims it is amazing how Woolworths can succumb to such triviality?I would like to know how much they had to pay to put the sticker on?halaal stickers on buns,on cereals etc,what next?halaal stickers on clothes,alcohol,seafood,or maybe even Pork?Considering the way they eat crayfish,which is regarded as the pig of the sea?Can't our people and corporates take a stand?His halaal certification is nothing but a scam!

  • hilton.baartman - 2012-03-29 10:35

    Here's the funny part, Woolies are probably going use the same recipe for the buns (Halaal and non-Halaal) and just not put a Halaal mark on the packet which will be 'non-halaal'. *facepalm*

  • Quinton - 2012-03-29 10:35

    Guys do we as Christians then normally put Bacon in the Hot Cross Buns? if you don't wanna buy at Woollies anymore , so be it..........Easter in any case is about the Resurrection..and not about an UN Halaal Bun...Get a life please....

  • CathrynReece - 2012-03-29 10:36

    If you ever bothered to take the time to read up about what a Halaal certification means (eg you'll discover it's signifies an incredibly clean and healthy manufacturing and packaging process for foods...

      Mike - 2012-03-29 12:25

      I think the problem is with the blessing, not with the recipe

      DuToitCoetzee - 2012-03-29 12:33

      Nonsens!!!! The same factories made the same products for years on the same standard. It is the ingredients and the prayer. It is religious!!!! To me the standard stays just quality!

      Shamier - 2012-03-29 14:35

      @ mike and DuToit...unless the buns have some meat product in them (Which would be beyond weird for a bun) blessing took place.

      DuToitCoetzee - 2012-03-29 15:01

      @Shamier. True, I remember after posting. Still my point stands. Why cant the normal standards be trusted? If you claim factories's labels are not true lets name and shame them. ....but you know it is not that.

  • Magda - 2012-03-29 10:36


  • KReddy - 2012-03-29 10:38

    This, the snakes gone ayonder in Sandton and the lady "sliced in half" by a plane nogal (as devastating as that may be), is a welcome break from the usual news. Why are ppl berating a halaal certificate? There are a lot of other items that is halaal certified but don't you think that if people were so uposet about a stamp on packaging that they may be even more upset at the satan worshipers, pagans, atheists etc that actually make the buns and imbibe it with their eeeeeeeeeeevil? Lol. Fyi, the mention of satan worshipers etc above have no connotation to any particular religion of faith. I am completely in favour of "each to their own" when it comes to religion. Each religion teaches the same - be good, do good etc. But then u get those extremists that give religion a bad nameM the core of easter is not hot x buns. Get over it or don't buy it, woollies will go under if they don't sell the damn thing. Hahahahaha

  • - 2012-03-29 10:38

    It is not the fact that it has n halal sticker on ,it is the fact that for every product you buy with the halal sticker on and percetage of the price are being payed to the Muslim halal society. So why should I as a Cristian pay any money to the muslim religion, I would rather boycott such a product and store that sells it

      staci.turnbull - 2012-03-29 11:11

      no Eddie that is incorrect, no percentage of the price of the item is paid to the MJC or SAHNA. It is an annual fee and it is a small amount.

      Marion - 2012-03-29 11:11

      By the same reasoning I guess you never donate to Gift of the Givers either despite the good work they do?

      Ed - 2012-03-29 11:36

      eddie...another adolph hitlet wannabee...the awb youth league awaits you in the afterlife. PS: sweet jehovah, i hope that your name is also not edward, i may just have to flail myself for being similar to such idiocrasy.

      Jacqui - 2012-03-30 08:35

      @Staci et al. I do not and will not ever donate anything to an Islamic organisation. There are plenty of Christian organisations doing good too. I would rather support them. It's the principle of the thing. It's kind of a slap in the face for Christians, but of course that's OK in the name of religious tolerance (not!) - we have to just put up or shut up. Well, I'm tired of shutting up.

  • Jo - 2012-03-29 10:39

    Typical Christian mentality to make a huge issue out of this. It's dough. With raisins. And castor sugar. Get a life.

      Rudi - 2012-03-29 11:37

      This isnt typical... It's a bunch of self appointed christian food police or something. They don't represent the majority.

      christina.engela - 2012-03-29 11:42

      Pity the majority never seems to stand up and tell the troublemaking bigots to sit down and STFU eh? ;)

      Marion - 2012-03-29 13:58

      @christina.engela - have you been reading all the posts? Many Christians posting here who are taking the troublemaking bigots to task.

  • Claudine - 2012-03-29 10:39

    Absolutely ridiculous!! its a freaking hotcross bun!! its a delicious treat - why can we not share it with everyone!! people need to stop being so petty!!! we are all the same

  • Spook - 2012-03-29 10:41

    I dont mind who eats the buns, its just that the cost for the certification is worked into the price which we are all paying for. Muslims do not donate money to Christians. Do they? But also why only the buns, halaal certification is on all the easter eggs, christmas cakes etc.

      natheer.abrahams - 2012-03-29 11:10

      just to comment on ur muslims dont donate to christians, @chrismas time naglistan made pots and pots of food to feed those less fortunate and celebrating. just saying

      staci.turnbull - 2012-03-29 11:12

      the buns are sold all year round at Woolies

      Jacqui - 2012-03-30 08:29

      I absolutely agree!

      katinkav - 2012-03-30 13:33

      Actually I do a christmas charity project every year and always get very generous donations from Muslim friends and colleagues - and both cases it was for a Christian children's home and a christian old age home... you might want to start checking all your foods for the kosher and halaal certifications - pretty soon you will be living on bacon and water - enjoy

  • Carla - 2012-03-29 10:42

    Seriously???? Hot cross buns??? With all the things in the world that you could be focusing your energy on, you pick hot cross buns??

  • Julie - 2012-03-29 10:42

    I love hot cross buns and easter eggs.....with or without a kosher stamp

  • marcellus.noel - 2012-03-29 10:43

    @Shamier A few years ago Pick & Pay had hot cross buns whithout crosses for sale...I wonder why (thinking face)

      Shamier - 2012-03-29 14:20

      I bet its cuz they ran outta dough...

  • jilli13 - 2012-03-29 10:43

    OH For G_D Sake, GROW UP. A hot Cross bun is just a chelsie bun without the sugary bit on it. Besides you precisious Easter is not an original Christian Holiday, it was stolen from the Pagan Faith, as its a Celebration of the coming of Spring, it is called Ostara, .... if we all stopped fighting about who is right and wrong, and just accept and respect each others view on what they believe and their traditions YOU would learn so much .... the "Tree of LIfe" in Genisis, gave us the ability to think and question, do you really think G_D would have wanted you to be a bunch of sheep, who just follow,I dont believe so but that is my opinion. Putting a Halal Sticker on a packet of hot cross buns, is a way of sharing with the masses, you eat Halal foods all the time, there is no Meat in a Hotcross bun, do any of you really understand what the meaning of Halal or even Kosher is .... its the giving of a blessing over the food the same way you say Grace when you have Dinner, Except this is done by an Imam in the case of the Halal, and a Rabbi in the case of Kosher. And Halal only refers to the how the Animal is slautered, to make sure its humain and the animal doesnt suffer (same applies to Kosher). Honestly .... To Chritsians out there like the ones mentioned above, G_D does not belong to you alone. Do you even Read your Bibles; Luke 6:41 "Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?.

  • Kim - 2012-03-29 10:46

    Does this mean that as an Atheist I now have to wear my lightening suit when handling a pack of WW hot cross buns??? This is so funny!

      Nicolene.Small.Blignaut - 2012-03-29 10:50

      Please do just now woolies is held responsible when your struck down for touching the holy hot cross buns :)

  • kerry.tavares - 2012-03-29 10:46

    Pathetic, shouldn't even make the news!

  • Nicolene.Small.Blignaut - 2012-03-29 10:47

    Oh please can every one get over them self's already its not like you can only get them over easter either way who hold's the exclusive right to bake spicy buns. How spiteful and immature

  • Glyn - 2012-03-29 10:47

    Christians should be less offended by trivia. By the same token, Muslims should also be less quick to be offended by insignificant self-constructed insults. Only those who want to be offended are offended!

  • Luke - 2012-03-29 10:47

    The hot cross bun is part of pagan tradition , the Saxons worshipped Eostre, the goddess of dawn and spring. At the beginning of the spring season they celebrated a month-long festival, marking the transition from Winter to Spring. During this festival the Saxons offered the buns to the goddess “Eostre”. They marked the buns with a simple cross to represent four phases of the moon. In England, Protestant English monarchs viewed the buns as a threat for the Catholic belief because they were made from dough that had been kneaded for consecrated bread used at Mass or Holy Communion. Protestant England attempted to ban the sale of the buns but they were too popular. Instead in 1592, Queen Elizabeth I issued the law permitting bakers to sell hot cross buns only during Easter, Christmas or at funerals. When the Christians gained a firmed position in Britain their leaders banned the pagan Easter traditions. However, the leaders soon discovered that it was more effective to give them Christian symbolism rather than completely eliminate them. In 782 A.D., the Christian leaders reinterpreted the meaning of the cross on the buns as the symbol of the Cross upon which Christ was crucified. In conclusion... whoever agrees or supports the "crucification" of WW, then you are a moron claiming your space on the WW HotXBun debacle and jumping on that burning band-wagon, as you have no clue about what you are having a frothing fit over. A closed mouth gathers no flies!

      jilli13 - 2012-03-31 08:26

      Brilliant love the detail... and so agree with you

  • Gerhard - 2012-03-29 10:47

    Pick 'n Pay's hot X buns are anyway much nicer.

  • Mari - 2012-03-29 10:47

    Listen People, it's only hot cross buns, nothing more, it's like buying easter eggs at easter. Moet nou nie ons almal laat onnosul lyk nie. Dit is net n Sticker!!!!

  • lytteot7 - 2012-03-29 10:48

    Maybe these complaining christians should start their own store and sell whatever is in line with their belief.

  • Tom - 2012-03-29 10:48

    heard they are changing the name as well.... to Tali Bun!! hahahaha

      Ed - 2012-03-29 11:37


  • Jean - 2012-03-29 10:49


  • Tom - 2012-03-29 10:49

    heard they are changing the name as well... to Tali Bun !! hahaha

  • RobynAddinall - 2012-03-29 10:50

    HAHAHAHAHA! This is hilarious. Get over it, people. There are MUCH bigger issues in the world than Halaal hot cross buns. So funny.

  • Jean - 2012-03-29 10:50


  • Ed - 2012-03-29 10:51 thing they will want a x on a red bull! since when has ANYTHING that us purchased in a shop, got to do with religion? since when did good old jehovah tell you to eat hot x buns or easter eggs? however i am sure that those christians who are allergic to something, whether it be yeast or raisins, would be extremely unhappy if the packaging did not list the ingredients. so what is the problem with letting people know that something is halaal? pathetic. hahahahaha...

  • Margaux - 2012-03-29 10:51

    once again Christians contradict themselves and "judge"...the amount of effort and time these guys have wasted on utter crap. seriously, Its a warm bread with a mark on it...and its good, no matter what mark is made on it!

  • clint.hendricks - 2012-03-29 10:52

    Really People? Hotcross buns has nothing do with Jesus?

      Anwar - 2012-03-29 12:16

      Absolutlety nothing.. i dont think hot cross buns were around when Jesus (p.b.u.h) was around

      Mary - 2012-03-31 20:47

      Nothing at all, but he does get a percentage of the profits (or is that prophets ).

  • spencer.nel.stevens - 2012-03-29 10:53

    God loves everyone. And he loves sharing. Surely sharing hot cross buns with everyone is not THAT bad?