Sainsbury’s sparked a social media sensation over the weekend by renaming its new vegan cheese range ‘Gary’ on Twitter.

The supermarket was reacting to an angry Facebook post from a cheese connoisseur, who objected to the free-from range being given the same name as its dairy counterparts. “Call it Gary or something, don’t call it cheese because it’s not cheese!” the post read.

The Sainsbury’s Twitter account said it had listened to customer feedback and, on Friday, posted a mocked-up picture of its free-from range branded as ‘Gary’.

The response was retweeted 1,500 times over the weekend and liked 2,500 times. Customers used the hashtag #gary to praise Sainsbury’s for its “brilliant” handling of the complaint, and a new Facebook page was formed called It’s not Vegan Cheese, it’s Gary, which has already attracted nearly 8,000 likes.

And it seems the PR has made an impact in stores, as one customer tweeted that their Sainsbury’s Chesterfield store was already out of ‘Gary’. This could be the most exciting launch of vegan cheese yet.

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