Japanese ramen maker Nissin, which sponsors tennis star Naomi Osaka, has apologized for ‘whitewashing’ the player’s skin tone in an anime ad which triggered a massive backlash from fans.

The company’s “Hungry to Win” Cup Noodle advertisement, which featured Osaka as an anime character with light brown hair and pale skin, drew criticism for not being an accurate depiction of the player, who has Haitian roots

The ad, which was illustrated by Japanese anime artist Takeshi Konomi, famous for his “Prince of Tennis” cartoon, drew a ton of backlash. 


Responding to the backlash, Nissin apologized for presenting a light-skinned version of the player, vowing “to pay more attention to diversity issues in the future.”

“There was no intention of whitewashing,” a Nissin spokesperson said by way of apology. “We accept that we are not sensitive enough and will pay more attention to diversity issues in the future.”

Stuff your sorries in a sack. 

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