‘Blood on Your Cans!’: PETA to Rattle Whole Foods in Winter Park Over Ties to Thai Monkey Abuse

For Immediate Release:
May 16, 2024

Reed Bolonyi 202-483-7382

A troop of PETA “monkeys” dressed in prisoner garb will dump fake blood from spoof Thai coconut milk cans emblazoned with “Cruel Foods” labels outside the Whole Foods store on N. Orlando Avenue on Saturday to slam the grocery giant for selling coconut milk from Thailand—which it continues to stock even though it knows that the country’s coconut industry is driven by the forced labor of endangered pig-tailed macaques.

When: Saturday, May 18, 12 noon

Where: Outside Whole Foods Market, 1030 N. Orlando Ave. (at the intersection of N. Orlando Avenue and Lee Road), Winter Park

spoof of a can of coconut milk with text that read Whole Foods Stop Selling Thai Coconut Milk - End Forced Monkey Labor
Credit: PETA

“Whole Foods is signing off on the abuse of an endangered species and willfully propping up an industry that kidnaps monkeys, chains them, and treats them as nothing more than coconut-picking machines,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA is calling on Whole Foods to help protect endangered monkeys by selling coconut milk only from countries where monkey labor isn’t used, such as India and the Philippines.”

Many monkeys exploited in Thailand’s coconut industry are illegally snatched from their forest homes as babies, fitted with metal collars, whipped, and forced to climb trees to pick heavy coconuts. Their canine teeth are often pulled out to leave them defenseless. Because the industry and the Thai government lie about their systemic reliance on forced monkey labor, it’s impossible to guarantee that any coconut milk from Thailand is free of it. Multiple companies that produce coconut milk sold at Whole Foods were named by industry workers in a PETA Asia investigation as having used coconuts obtained via monkey labor.

HelloFresh, Purple Carrot, and Performance Food Group have stopped sourcing coconut milk from Thailand following PETA’s exposé, as have international companies such as Aldi, ASDA, and Lidl.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—points out that Every Animal Is Someone and offers free Empathy Kits for people who need a lesson in kindness.

For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on X, Facebook, or Instagram.

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