Canned Unicorn Meat: Pâté is passé. Unicorn, the new white meat.

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While this story has been circulating for several years, I still find it fascinating as it proves the world still has room for new ideas and even the New York Times loves a good prank..

As ThinkGeek needs to up the ante each year, in 2010 it decided to create a product called Canned Unicorn Meat. The tag line for this new delicacy? “Pâté is passé. Unicorn, the new white meat.” It promised to be an “excellent source of sparkles!” It was, of course, fake.

bits-unicorn-articleInlineAlthough it is probably clear to most nerds and wildlife experts, the National Pork Board, an organization devoted to pork and related businesses and farms, saw a threat to the national brand of pork, otherwise known as “the other white meat.” So the organization sent ThinkGeek a cease-and-desist letter.

ThinkGeek published the letter and offered this apology on its Web bits-unicorn-blogSpansite to the board: “We’d like to publicly apologize to the N.P.B. for the confusion over unicorn and pork — and for their awkward extended pause on the phone after we had explained our unicorn meat doesn’t actually exist.”

On the company Web site, Scott Kauffman, president and C.E.O. of Geeknet, which owns ThinkGeek, said, “It was never our intention to cause a national crisis and misguide American citizens regarding the differences between the pig and the unicorn.” Mr. Kauffman also noted, “In fact, ThinkGeek’s canned unicorn meat is sparkly, a bit red, and not approved by any government entity.”

ThinkGeek also issued a press release that stated, “Geeknet apologizes to the National Pork Board for unicorn meat confusion.” But the company says the release was rejected by the news wires.

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