Does forcing monkeys into a lifetime of labor chained by the neck in Thailand to collect coconuts sound kind to you? Whole Foods apparently has no problem with it. On November 9, PETA’s animal advocates called out a Vancouver Whole Foods store for selling cruelly obtained coconut milk. The giant grocery chain seems fine with Thai workers perpetuating monkey labor by stealing babies from their forest homes, chaining and dangling them by the neck, and forcing them to pick coconuts. PETA won’t stand for it.
Calling Out Whole Foods for Supporting Monkey Labor
PETA’s bold action outside a Whole Foods store in Vancouver caught consumers’ attention. Learning about coconut milk obtained by Thailand’s forced monkey labor made multiple shoppers pause. Advocates dressed as chained macaques brought wheelbarrows of ethically sourced coconuts to drop in front of the store, making a striking statement.
PETA’s persistent campaign exposes Whole Foods’ support of speciesist practices. Submitting shareholder resolutions, posting provocative ads, and even having longtime PETA supporter and fearless vegan singer Morrissey tell the company to kick cruel Thai coconut milk to the curb, we’ve worked relentlessly to end forced monkey labor.
Thailand’s Coconut Industry
PETA Asia has conducted three investigations into Thailand’s coconut industry. Every time, investigators found monkeys chained for life, trained through fear of punishment, forced to pick coconuts, and unable to do anything that’s natural and important to them. Several companies that own coconut milk brands sold by Whole Foods were named by industry workers as using coconuts obtained through monkey labor.
In nature, macaques are free to forage, explore, and socialize with friends and family. In Thailand’s coconut-picking industry, endangered pig-tailed macaques are often illegally snatched from their forest homes as babies. It’s common for handlers to fit them with rigid metal collars, use chains and leashes to choke and control them, and even pull their canine teeth out so that they can’t defend themselves.
Take Action: Help End Monkey Labor in Thailand
Never buy cans of coconut milk that read, “Product of Thailand.” Tell Whole Foods to stop supporting this cruel industry by refusing to sell coconut milk from that country.