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With Bandid_ cans, cider brand Bandida do Pomar leaves gender expression up to its customers

The logo for a Portuguese hard cider brand features an eponymous fox: the orchard bandit, or Bandida do Pomar. In Portuguese, noun endings change depending on whether an object or being is feminine or masculine, so bandida could also be bandido. Or bandidx? Bandida do Pomar is currently running a campaign that leaves that choice up to its customers.

A 300,000-unit run of cans of its most popular plain apple flavor reads 'Bandid_' instead of 'Bandida.' Buyers can fill in the blank as they please, leaving room for their expression of gender or any other aspect of their uniqueness — it's a limited edition product that aims to be inclusive, not exclusive.

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The recent Bud Light controversy, which saw conservatives boycotting the American beer brand because it partnered with a trans woman for a March Madness promotion, might be emblematic of the US culture wars. But everywhere, the alcohol industry is saturated with gender-specific messaging.

Bandida do Pomar's light-hearted brand activation goes against that grain, saying, "Nesta lata há espaço para todo" — this can has room for everyone. Not necessarily limited to gender identity, the concept is part of a broader 'denuncia-te' campaign for the six-year-old, Heineken-owned cider, centered around encouraging people to express or reveal themselves and their quirks. If your brand believes individuality and diverse perspectives enrich our society, how could you let your products convey that message?