Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Burger King Boycott

As regular readers of my blog are aware, I am trying very hard to pratice conscious consumerism, where I will not go to stores and establishments that have policies and practices that I disagree with. For me this means places that donate heavily to the Republican party or to fundamentalistic Christian organizations. This also means I try not to go stores with poor human rights actions. Last week I was sent this story by two different reputable sources and after reading the pieces, I was outraged!

This from Oxfam America:
McDonald's and other fast-food chains, including Taco Bell and Pizza Hut, have committed to increasing wages and enforcing better working conditions for farmworkers who pick tomatoes. But Burger King—the second-largest hamburger chain in the world—has so far refused to work with farmworkers to improve wages for those who pick their tomatoes.

This from the NY Times:
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/29/opinion/29schlosser.html?_r=1&hp&oref=slogin Here's a snippet of the piece: In 2005, Florida tomato pickers gained their first significant pay raise since the late 1970s when Taco Bell ended a consumer boycott by agreeing to pay an extra penny per pound for its tomatoes, with the extra cent going directly to the farm workers. Last April, McDonald’s agreed to a similar arrangement, increasing the wages of its tomato pickers to about 77 cents per bucket. But Burger King, whose headquarters are in Florida, has adamantly refused to pay the extra penny — and its refusal has encouraged tomato growers to cancel the deals already struck with Taco Bell and McDonald’s.

I simply cannot understand Burger King's policy - why are they doing this? It makes no sense. If you are like me, upset over this than please write the corporation and let them know. Here is the address:
Burger King Corporation
5505 Blue Lagoon Drive
Miami, Florida 33126

I've already sent them my letter as well as written two letters to the editor. I will no longer be going to Burger King until they stop this practice, these migrant workers do not lead the glamrous life, I don't begrudge them a penny. If its such a big deal to the Burger, than increase the price of a Whopper, I don't have any problems paying an extra penny if it means some guy who works 12 hour days for something like $1o a day, in the hot grueling sun gets a raise.

9 Comments:

Blogger Kate said...

COMPLETELY unrelated to this - though this was a really interesting and informative post, so thank you for it - I've just noticed how you've linked to my blog. My Fab Scottish Friend - you crack me up!! I miss you so much!!!!! When are you gonna be over here in Europe?!?!

4:48 PM  
Blogger Darla D said...

Yuck - I just don't do fast food anymore. Your post makes me feel even better about that decision! They really should be ashamed of that behavior (and also of the nutritional content of their food - or lack thereof!).

7:25 PM  
Blogger School Bus Worker Project said...

I understand Gypsies are an Indian nomadic tribe. One day I will tell you my Gypsie stories.

10:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

But, pennies are pennies, and big companies look at everything. Write this up for one of your MBA classes and you'd probably fail. Corporations are for the stockholders, don't think of the little people.
But glad that you don't eat there, and that you do pay attention to this kind of stuff.
JoeInVegas (bacause blogger will not let me log in as myself)

11:43 AM  
Blogger mommanator said...

great blog! I try not to do any fast food, but the grandson HAS to go to Mc'ds

7:02 PM  
Blogger Molly Malone said...

hey VA Gal, i'm always so inspired by your passion. i don't really eat fast food anymore, so i can't really participate in a boycott. however, i suppose i could write to burger king. i think it's so wonderful that you've actually taken action with letters to the editor, etc. that's AWESOME!
incidentally, two years ago, our general church issued a statement to Taco Bell calling on them to pay their tomato workers fairly. our church also urged parishoners to join in a taco bell boycott. i'm very proud that my church was part of the voices lifted for fairer wages. the more people who speak out for fairness in the marketplace, the more vendors wil have to repond!
good for you!

1:57 PM  
Blogger Virginia Gal said...

Kate - you are my Fab Scottish Friend! Soon my friend, soon I will be in Europe, I can't wait!!

Darla - you are always one step ahead of me, not even eating fast food, good for you!! Maybe this is the impetus I need to move me away from these bad foods as well.

School Bus Worker Project - Welcome! Yes Gypsies have come from the Indian area, hence why we look very similar.

Joe - you are right and certainly BK is looking out for shareholders, but one thing we are learning nowadays is that there is a way to be a business and also have human compassion. BK needs some new MBA blood there!

Mommantor - well McD's is ok, they gave into the raise, which makes BK's refusal all the more horrible!

Molly - thank you! I think the more I feel frustrated about my life or about sad things I hear in the world, the more I feel like I can't sit back and wait for someone else to change it. I try to do my part, albeit how little it is. That is awesome about your church and they were successful, Taco Bell did give the raise!

2:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's interesting to see just how pervasive memory has become in our every day lives. It's like everytime I turn my head, I see something with a card slot or USB jack, haha. I guess it makes sense though, considering how much more afforable memory has become lately...

Ahhh, who am I to complain. I can't make it through a single day without my R4 / R4i!

(Posted on OperaV2 for R4i Nintendo DS.)

8:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi,

I begin on internet with a directory

3:37 PM  

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