Fukushima Industries just made a very unfortunate branding choice

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Say “Fukushima,” and most people probably don’t think “refrigerators.” Thanks to the 2011 disaster in Japan’s Fukushima province, things like “radiation” or “nuclear leak” are more likely to spring to mind.

That might make things tough for fridge-maker Fukushima Industries, which had nothing to do with the 2011 nuclear meltdown. But unfortunately, the firm’s new mascot probably isn’t going to do much to change that. Via RocketNews24, here’s… Fukuppy:

Image: Fukushima Industries

What’s Fukuppy’s purpose? Ask him! “I fly around on my awesome wings, patrolling supermarket showcases and kitchen refrigerators,” explains Fukuppy on Fukushima Industries’ site (translation from RocketNews24). ”I can talk to vegetables, fruit, meat, and fish and can check on their health!”

Though Fukuppy does claim to be a “bit of a klutz,” his name probably doesn’t have anything to do with what it sounds like pronounced in English. For one, his name is actually pronounced “foo-koo-pee.”

But among English-speakers, Fukuppy probably seems like it would be a fitting name for a Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant mascot. The chief cause of the 2011 meltdown was human error, not the tsunami/earthquake, found a report commissioned by the Japanese government. In July, the head of Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority admitted that the plant has been contaminating the ocean for two years since he and his staff have been unable to pinpoint the leak’s origin. As a result, as many as 80,000 people could get cancer, two nuclear experts told the Georgia Straight, a Canadian news weekly.