RUSSIA — Fast food company Burger King Russia has been forced to apologize after an advertisement offered Russian women the chance to win $47,000 and free Whoppers for life if they got impregnated by a World Cup player.
The short-lived campaign was promoted in Russia on Tuesday via social media platform VK — Russia’s equivalent of Facebook — before being pulled down after a flurry of angry responses from the public.
Burger King Russia then released an apology on VK, saying they had removed all materials related to the campaign as it was ‘insulting.”
According to Russian news agency Interfax, Burger King Russia’s master franchisee is Burger Rus LLC.
Neither Burger Rus nor Burger King were immediately available for comment when contacted by CNN.
Earlier this month, a senior Russian lawmaker called on her countrywomen not to have sex with foreign men visiting Russia during the World Cup, saying Russian women “should give birth to our own.”
In a radio interview with radio station Govorit Moskva, Tamara Pletnyova, the chairperson of the Duma committee on families, women and children, said she was concerned about a rise in single mothers. Russian citizens, she said, should marry each other and “build a good family, live together, give birth to children and educate them.”
Pletnyova was responding to a question about a spike in births from foreign fathers following the 1980 Moscow Olympics.
“These children then suffer and have suffered even from Soviet times,” she said. “You know this perfectly well. It’s fine if they’re one race, but not if they’re from a different race. I’m not a nationalist, but still. I know the children suffer, then they get abandoned and that’s it, they stay with their mom here.”
The World Cup final is on July 15.