Meanwhile, some corporations that should have stepped up to the plate gave token contributions at the eleventh hour. Whole Foods, a corporation with net sales as high as Monsanto's--both have approximately $11 billion in annual sales--contributed a mere $25,000, just two business days before the election, Cornucopia noted in its research. On the other hand, Monsanto contributed $8,113,000 to the "No on 37"- campaign effort.
"Had we seen the same level of enthusiasm for consumers' right-to-know from Whole Foods as we saw against the right-to-know from Monsanto, the playing field would have been more level, and the misleading information spewed by giant corporate agribusinesses would quite possibly not have prevailed on election day," said Kastel. "Meaningful participation from Whole Foods could have been a game changer."
Cornucopia encourages organic consumers who shop at Whole Foods to continue doing so. Rather than boycott the multi-billion-dollar corporate food retailer, Cornucopia encourages Whole Foods shoppers to write corporation leadership, through their website, and share their discontent with the major retailer's unwillingness to fully step up to the plate on financially supporting the "Yes on 37" campaign.
In its annual report for shareholders, Whole Foods writes, "We walk our talk when it comes to our core values." Whole Foods shareholders should be concerned with the corporation's lackluster participation in this "food fight of the decade," when they passed up an opportunity to walk their talk and refused to step up to the plate in terms of financial support for this grassroots effort. "It will remain to be seen whether Whole Foods has squandered some of their goodwill," Kastel lamented.
Many consumers who do feel betrayed might seek out one of the country's almost 300 member-owned co-ops, or one of the iconic independent natural food grocers for purchases of organic, non-GMO food.
A chart delineating where retailers stood, pro and con, in backing proposition 37 can be found at: www.cornucopia.org/2012/08/prop37
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