Jacob Rees-Mogg has dismissed serving baked beans on Weetabix for breakfast, amid calls for a debate in the House of Commons.
Weetabix sparked a backlash on Twitter after posting an image of “Beanz on bix”, a combination rubbished by the US embassy in the UK, among others.
Commons Leader Mr Rees-Mogg disclosed he prefers his Weetabix with hot milk and brown sugar, and quoted a “desperately politically incorrect” Heinz Baked Beans advertising slogan that his family had modified.
Conservative MP Philip Hollobone, whose Kettering constituency is home to Weetabix, raised the issue in the Commons, telling MPs: “One of the debates that has been dividing the nation this week, perhaps even more divisive than Brexit, is whether having Weetabix with baked beans is an attractive serving suggestion for a healthy meal.
“Now, we all need a little light relief in these difficult times, so may we have a debate on breakfast cereals and their contribution to a healthy diet so that we can all arrive at the shared position that with whatever it is served, Weetabix is a great British breakfast cereal fully worthy of promotion?”
Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle said he prefers his Weetabix with milk, before Mr Rees-Mogg said: “As they used to say, ‘Weetabix are unbeatabix’.
“My personal preference, if I were to eat Weetabix, is not with baked beans – which I’ve always thought are absolutely disgusting.
“There was an advert, well I’m sorry if I’ve upset the makers of baked beans, there was a saying which is desperately politically incorrect nowadays – so I hope (shadow Commons leader Valerie Vaz) will forgive me – their advertising slogan, ‘A million housewives every day pick up a can of beans and say Beanz Meanz Heinz’.
“But when I was a child this was corrupted to, ‘A million housewives every day pick up a can of beans and say ‘Yuck, throw them away’. I’m sorry that has always been my view of baked beans.
“Weetabix is absolutely splendid served with hot milk and brown sugar.
“Though for preference for breakfast, Mr Speaker, you’ll know what I like – it’s nanny’s homemade marmalade on toast.”
Sir Lindsay added: “I think the good people of Wigan will be offended, where all the baked beans for Europe come from.
“I can see the factory are all sending their letters to the Leader now.”