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Quebec language police target frozen yogurt spoons

Watch: Quebec language police target spoons

MONTREAL – A frozen yogurt company in the Montreal area has been asked by Quebec’s language police to stop using its disposable spoons.

According to a post on Menchie’s Facebook page, in response to a complaint, the The Office quebecois de la langue francaise  (OQLF) have asked the spoons to be replaced because of the words “Sweet Moosic” molded into the handle.

“We were visited by Office Quebec de La Langue Francaise and they cited us for having English molded in the spoons, apparently responding to a complaint,” Menchie’s said in the post.

“We are working as fast as we can to get new spoons made just for our Quebec stores, at a large expense to us.”

The incident, which follows on the heels of other language watchdog controversies like “pastagate” and “caffegate,” has caused a stir on social media.

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Check out reaction here

Quebec’s language watchdog has issued a statement insisting that it has not banned a certain type of frozen-yogurt spoon.

It has merely opened a yogurt-spoon investigation.

The OQLF has confirmed that it has opened an investigation after receiving a complaint about the plastic spoons served by the American frozen yogurt chain Menchie’s.

So the department opened a file. An inspector went to the outlet to look into the case, and an inspection report is underway. No decision has been made yet.

The OQLF began its statement by expressing frustration at what it views as overblown coverage of its activities by “certain media.”

It urges media to seek its side of the story before reporting on language flareups.

The OQLF received a six per cent budget increase, to $24.7 million, this year under the new Parti Quebecois government after it also received a smaller increase the previous year under the old Liberal government.

But the organization has also come under criticism from the PQ, which is generally more hawkish on language. The PQ government said the agency had been “overzealous” in its handling of files.

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Here’s the letter Menchie’s received from the OQLF:

OQLF letter
The Office quebecois de la langue francaise (OQLF) sent this letter to Menchie’s about its yogurt spoons.

In pictures: A look at several photos of the offending spoons.

The Office quebecois de la langue francaise confirms that it has opened an investigation after receiving a complaint about the plastic spoons served by the American frozen yogurt chain Menchie's.
The Office quebecois de la langue francaise confirms that it has opened an investigation after receiving a complaint about the plastic spoons served by the American frozen yogurt chain Menchie's. Courtesy Stephen Holtzman
spoongate
Erika Schwartz holds up one of the spoons that has been said to contravene Quebec's French language laws because of its English words at a yogurt store in Montreal on Friday, June 21, 2013. Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press
OQLF letter
The Office quebecois de la langue francaise (OQLF) sent this letter to Menchie's about its yogurt spoons.
spoons
A frozen yogurt company in the Montreal area has been asked by Quebec's language police to stop using its disposable spoons. Menchie's
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