Multiple reports that the famous green and gold Australian Made logo was being replaced caused a lot of confusion on Wednesday.
Headlines that the iconic kangaroo logo would be “ditched” or “sidelined” led to angry comments on social media – including from one MP who said the new logo “looks like a virus”.
Here’s what you need to know.
The Australian Made logo is not changing
Except for a slight tweak in the colour scheme, the little kangaroo logo on many goods sold locally and internationally is here to stay.
Glenn Cooper, chairman of The Australian Made Campaign, said the logo has been central to Australia’s export strategies.
“The iconic green and gold kangaroo logo has been clearly identifying Australian goods in export markets for more than 34 years with great success,” he said.
“There is no need to make a change in this space.”
What about the colour scheme?
The Australian Made logo will change slightly in that the colours will transition to darker shades of green and gold.
Federal Trade Minister Simon Birmingham said the decision was made for consistency reasons.
“Currently, people would see it is as a bit more green and yellow, and we’re going at a deeper, richer gold, a deeper richer green as part of that shift to the Australian Made kangaroo,” he told Adelaide radio station 5AA.
“It’s about having a consistency that when we’re turning up to trade shows or different events around the world, there’s an overarching imagery of Australia and how it’s presented.”
OK, so what about this other logo we’ve been seeing?
This logo was recommended by the National Brand Advisory Council and signed off on by the Trade Minister.
The NBAC is made up of national business leaders, including mining billionaire Andrew Forrest, Glenn Cooper of Coopers brewery (and The Australia Made Campaign) and Australia Post chief executive Christine Holgate, and its purpose is to help develop a strong national brand for Australia.
Costing taxpayers $10 million, this logo is part of a suite of products and resources for governments, government agencies and industry bodies to use at promotional events such as trade shows and conferences.
Senator Birmingham said this branding exercise was again about consistency.
“It’s simply trying to provide an overarching framework that can allow us to have some consistency in our approach,” he said.
“Because it is one of the common refrains of criticism that we’ve had over the years, which is that each of our states go out and they present themselves in an entirely different way.”
As for the new logo looking ‘like a virus’ …
NSW MP Mark Coure, seemingly confused by reports the new logo would replace the kangaroo logo, tweeted that the new logo “looks like a virus”.
And he wasn’t the only one making this observation. Lake Macquarie councillor Kevin Baker slammed the new design as a “generic looking splash of colour”.
Rather than a virus or splash of colour, Senator Birmingham’s office has confirmed the new logo is actually meant to resemble Australia’s native golden wattle, which appears on the Commonwealth Coat of Arms.
Senator Birmingham said the new design was less about a single logo, and more about how it can be used in various ways on promotional material.
“I don’t hold myself out as some advertising or marketing guru – that’s what we have experts for – but I think people will see that is a stylistic, modern representation of Australia,” he said.