Main | Thursday, October 09, 2008

Bolthouse Farms Boycott Ends

Californians Against Hate has called off their boycott of Bolthouse Farms.
The food fight is over. Nearly a month ago, opponents of Proposition 8 -- which would amend the state Constitution to ban gay marriage -- started a "soft boycott" of Bolthouse Farms, among the largest producers of fresh-cut carrots in the world and the maker of juices and smoothies sold in foodie haunts and upscale markets.

Company patriarch William Bolthouse Jr. had donated $100,000 to help get the measure on the Nov. 4 ballot, and Californians Against Hate wanted gay and lesbian shoppers and their friends to know it. The group figured it was truth in labeling.

Demonstrations at the "rock 'n' roll" Ralphs on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood and Whole Foods markets in New York City and Washington, D.C., ensued. The gay blogosphere lit up, indignant.

But on Wednesday, the company and the advocacy group made peace, and the prickly pear cactus lemonade can flow again.

The "Don't Buy Bolthouse" campaign ended because the company's chief executive "has provided us with a compelling perspective which clearly demonstrates the separation between Bolthouse Farms and ... its founder, William Bolthouse," Californians Against Hate said Wednesday in a written statement. That perspective, the statement continued, "provides us with confidence that Bolthouse Farms is committed to working productively with the [lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender] community."

For its part, the Bakersfield-based food giant "thanks Californians Against Hate for recognizing our work to meet our mission of showing respect and integrity to our employees, our vendors and our customers," company spokesman Lane Hudson said Wednesday in another written statement.
Californians Against Hate are continuing their boycotts of the San Diego hotels owned by Doug Manchester and A-1 Self-Storage, whose owner Terry Caster donated almost $300K to Yes On 8.

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