This week (Jan. 8, 2018) Ben & Jerry’s proudly announced its 10 best-selling ice cream flavors in 2017.
You can’t claim to care about the environment, and still source your milk from farmers that use pesticide-drenched GMO grains to feed their cows.
You can’t claim to care about the environment if your supply chain is a major source of water pollution—a fact that sticks taxpayers will a big fat clean-up bill.
You can’t claim to care about getting money out of politics (no matter how much free ice cream you promise) if your dairy farmers are buying all their seeds and toxic chemicals from Monsanto—a company that spends millions to buy off politicians and regulators.
On its website, Ben & Jerry’s claims to care about climate justice. Specifically, the company says:
We live in a world where the effects of climate change are increasingly real; from melting ice caps to rampant forest fires, it can no longer be denied that man-made carbon pollution is affecting our fragile planet. The scientific evidence is settled; global warming is real and already impacting people around the world. The question now is, “What are we doing about it?”
We’re not buying Ben & Jerry’s long list of greenwashing claims.
We’re also not buying Ben & Jerry’s ice cream.
Unfortunately, a lot of retail stores—including natural health stores and food co-ops—are still buying, and selling, Ben & Jerry’s.
That’s why we’ve been asking consumers to ask their favorite stores to dump Ben & Jerry’s until the Unilever-owned brand commits to going 100% organic.
And it’s starting to work.
Case in point: One of our members recently reported asking Feather River Food Co-Op in Portola, California, to stop stocking Ben & Jerry’s. She spoke with a store employee, and here’s what she reported back:
This store had never carried Ben and Jerry's ice cream until a sale flyer came out from their main co-op supplier, NCG, (National Co-operative Grocers) listing Ben and Jerry's pumpkin cheesecake ice cream as a sale item on the flyer. She and her assistant decided to stock a small supply of just that flavor for the sale ad. Soon she was hearing from customers (besides me) that there were problems with Ben and Jerry's Ice cream company, perhaps even more than the glyphosate. Soon they pulled the three that were left. She has told me they do not plan to sell this product in the future. I hope someone from OCA has contacted the NCG.
That’s what we call a victory. Now we need to replicate that victory all over the country.
Want to help? It’s easy. Check out this list of natural food stores and co-ops. If your local store is listed, please deliver this letter to the store asking it to dump Ben & Jerry’s! Then if you can, please fill out this form to let us know what the store said.
Let’s get every natural food store and food co-op to stop selling Ben & Jerry’s—even if we have to do it one by one!
Katherine Paul is associate director of the Organic Consumers Association. Sign up here for updates on the Ben & Jerry’s campaign and other news and alerts from OCA.