The 60-second spot features a waitress on crutches trying to identify her attacker from a lineup of several black men and a goat. The goat character, known as Felicia, intimidates the woman with remarks such as “Ya better not snitch on a player” and “Snitches get stitches. She eventually screams: “I can’t do this, no, no, no” and flees the lineup.
It ends with a policeman drinking the soda and the brand’s “Dew It” slogan appears.
The advert has sparked a fierce backlash on social media. The drinks maker responded by pulling the video from all its online channels, although it still exists on individual YouTube accounts.
PepsiCo took to Twitter and Facebook to admit it was a “mistake” to run the ad and apologised for any offence caused. The post read: “We apologise for the offensive video and take full responsibility – made a big mistake – we’ve removed it from all our channels. #fail.”
In a separate statement the company said: “We apologize for this ad and take full responsibility. We have removed it from all Mountain Dew channels and Tyler is removing it from his channels as well.”
The controversial spot is the third in a series created and directed by rapper Tyler the Creator. The first advert showed the goat character attacking a waitress after she failed to bring enough Mountain Dew, while the second featured the animal on the run from police.
The incident comes a week after car brand Hyundai pulled a controversial ad which depicts a man attempting to commit suicide in his car.