Home U.K 'Backing Russia!' Supermarket row erupts as Britons demand Chicken Kiev renamed

'Backing Russia!' Supermarket row erupts as Britons demand Chicken Kiev renamed


People took to social media to call for the change to the dish which currently uses the Russian pronunciation of the name of the country’s capital city. One Twitter user urged British supermarkets: “Please immediately rename chicken KIEV chicken KYIV in respect of Ukraine (Kiev is the Russian spelling).”

Another user asked: “Campaign to rename Chicken Kiev Chicken Kyiv?”

She told Express.co.uk that while she loved the dish, the mood now is to use Kyiv rather than Kiev, adding: “The only reply I got thought it was a joke, but I thought it would be a good idea.

“My best friend has family in Ukraine. Her family could not get in touch for a while and were very worried. They have now heard from them. They have been told not to go out, but are worried for their elderly mother who lives in the country.”

The woman, who asked not to be named, explained that she has degree qualifications in psychology and worked for many years in mental health.

She said: “I personally think Putin is a psychopath. I think everyone is terrified of Putin and rightly so. I believe the zeitgeist now is to adopt the Ukrainian pronunciation, preferred in solidarity.”

Written in the native Cyrillic script, Kyiv is spelt Київ in Ukrainian and Киев in Russian.

The English language spellings reflect this difference and have become a bone of contention for the differences between the two.

From 2018 Ukraine’s ministry of foreign affairs campaigned for media outlets to only use Kyiv.


Kyiv itself is home to three million people. There have been reports of explosions heard in the city since Thursday when Moscow began its invasion.

Ukrainian border officials said on Friday that Russian helicopters were attacking Gostomel, a military airport near Kyiv. There are reports that on Friday Russian troops could reach the city.

On the difference in spelling its name, Andrew Wilson, professor of Ukrainian studies at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies at UCL, told The Telegraph: “Kyiv is a transliteration from the letters of the Ukrainian alphabet, whereas Kiev is a transliteration from the Russian.

“It’s normal practice – as well as correct – to follow the transliteration of the language of the local state. Other Russian names have been changing to reflect Ukrainian spelling. Odessa has become Odesa and Lvov has become Lviv. Ukrainian is a far more beautiful language.”

Chicken Kiev, as it continues to be called, is made of pounded chicken fillet, rolled around cold butter then coated with egg and bread crumbs. It can be fried or baked.

It is a popular dish in former Soviet states as well as in English speaking countries, including Britain.

Express.co.uk has approached a number of UK supermarkets for comment.

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