We're not even two weeks into 2018 and H&M is already the proud owner of the year's first big scandal. After an image appeared on their U.K. website depicting a black child sporting a hoodie with the slogan, "Coolest Monkey in the Jungle," a barrage of criticism was waiting for the worldwide clothing retailer on social media. Earlier this morning, the company responded to the backlash with their own remorseful statement.

“We understand that many people are upset about the image. We, who work at H&M, can only agree,” read the statement, which can be seen in full below. “We are deeply sorry that the picture was taken, and we also regret the actual print. Therefore, we have not only removed the image from our channels, but also the garment from our product offering globally.

“It is obvious that our routines have not been followed properly," the company added. "This is without any doubt. We will thoroughly investigate why this happened to prevent this type of mistake from happening again.”

LeBron James was one of the celebrities who put H&M on blast for this egregious piece of decision-making, while The Weeknd vowed never to work with the retailer again following the error. To make matters worse, there was another image of a white child wearing a hoodie that said "Survival Expert" on it, a comparative that, according to the Toronto Star, only made the reaction more intense. The clothing giant can only hope that this lapse in judgement by someone in the company does not tarnish the brand's reputation long-term.

Do you think H&M's apology statement was enough? Sound off in the comments.