The Kiwi makers of a gin which drew outrage over its "offensive" gin label says it will withdraw it from production effective immediately.
However, Indiginous Gin co-director Gavin Bradley says they'll be keeping their name as it has been approved by Māori Advisory Committee of the Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand.
Bradley told the Herald they had temporarily disabled their social media channels due to being inundated with complaints.
The company name and specifically the design of their inaugural gin has been labelled as offensive and their actions labelled "cultural appropriation" in having a Māori/Pacific design, or tattoo, designed for their label by a Porirua artist.
The label of the gin in question features a koru heavily throughout, integrated with unique Polynesian designs.
Bradley says they never set out to offend anyone and instead wanted to celebrate the origin of all things indigenous.
But cultural adviser Karaitiana Taiuru of Christchurch said they had, and they needed to look at changing the label and rebranding their company.
"It's definitely offensive. There's two different angles for me. Mixing and matching the word indigenous which in itself is an identity word of importance to indigenous people all around the world and locking that into an alcoholic topic which is also offensive to most indigenous peoples.
"Closer to home, the whole issue of a ta moko or Māori designs on an alcohol bottle; that breaches sacredness because you're mixing effectively something that's talking about a Māori whakapapa and putting it on to a bottle of alcohol.
"I think people are familiar with the issues of alcohol being introduced by colonisers and the social issues there are now with alcohol."
He said it was also unclear whether the person who designed the "tattoo" was Māori.
Taiuru called for both the label and the company name to be changed.
"The company could suffer a lot of brand damage, not just locally but internationally if they don't rebrand. Where there's these cultural appropriation matters there's usually a lot of attention.
"I think they've got a responsibility to respectful of New Zealand's culture. If I was an investor I would looking at it quite seriously."
People wrote their disgust on the company's Facebook page. One wrote, "This is SO WRONG! Bad idea, bad taste and degrading. Get it off the shelf,"while another said "not appropriating a culture to sell alcohol would be a great start. White people white peopling'."
Another used summed up the issues writing "This is classic cultural appropriation. Using botanicals does not make something indigenous. Alcohol was and is a major tool of the coloniser that has been incredibly destructive for indigenous peoples globally. Take our designs off and rebrand!"
Bradley "unreservedly apologised for any offence caused".
"Indiginous is obviously a play on indigenous, an English word derived from the Latin 'indigena' meaning native.
"Our brand concept is to tell stories about the people, the places and the ingredients that make up our gins. Our intent is to celebrate those things, not 'appropriate' them.
"And the visual concept is tattoo. Each label is designed by a tattoo artist to bring relevance to the people, place or ingredient."
Bradley said they were thorough in trying to ensure they didn't offend anybody when deciding to use the koru; one of only three Māori words and designs that are allowed to be used unreservedly.
As for why they want to keep the company name, Bradley said it was a word derived from the English language in common use that "had far broader meaning than just indigenous 'people'."
"We have trademarked the indiginous logo which has been reviewed and approved by the Māori Advisory Committee of the Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand."
Although "Pākehā", Bradley and fellow company directors Simon Wilson and Chris Charteris are all Kiwis brought up with Māori.
Bradley, 61, went to the first school in South Auckland to take Pākehā in the 1960s. It was set next to the local marae.
"I have grown up with the culture and so have my family and my kids and I see myself as a New Zealander."