Animal Rights Protesters Worldwide Stream into Chipotle Stores as Company’s Growth Falters, Prices Increase

by Wayne Hsiung on April 21, 2014

Activists Say Chipotle’s Premium Prices Reflect Fraud, not “Food with Integrity”

Animal rights activists in Silicon Valley and Berkeley with the grassroots animal rights network Direct Action Everywhere (DxE) held in-store vigils at Chipotle Mexican Grill this weekend to remember the animals killed for food. The demonstrations occurred in the immediate aftermath of the company’s disappointing earnings announcement and $1 billion drop in shareholder value

The activists say that the chain, which announced a price increase for the first time in three years this week despite slowing growth and increasing controversy over its corporate ethics, profits off of brutal violence against animals. “They’ve made billions off of environmental devastation, exploitative labor conditions, and, above all, hurting animals while claiming the mantle of ‘Food with Integrity’ ” protester Ronnie Rose said. “But the public and even financial markets are waking up to that fraud.”

In Mountain View, protesters yesterday suddenly appeared in the store holding large banners of animals raised in so-called “humane” conditions. The protesters stood silently in vigil as customers watched. In Berkeley, demonstrators began to appear in front of the store, one-by-one, until the initially small protest swelled into a crowd of dozens. Both protests were held as part of DxE’s international “It’s not Food, It’s Violence” campaign, which has now reached 37 cities in 13 countries.

“Corporations have an interest in whitewashing their transgressions,”  one protester  said. “But few companies have the audacity to turn their transgressions into integrity, as Chipotle has done. What they are doing is not integrity. It’s not even food. It’s violence.”

Chipotle is the immediate focus of DxE’s campaign, but the DxE activists note that violence against animals extends far beyond Chipotle’s walls. In the United States alone, approximately 10 billion animals (not including fish and other sea animals) are killed annually to be eaten. Animals who are killed for their flesh endure intense psychological and physical trauma, and undercover investigations have found that they are routinely eviscerated while still conscious.

View photographs of the demonstrations this weekend here.

Direct Action Everywhere is a network of animal rights activists working to challenge speciesism throughout society. We use creative protest to challenge the use of animals for food, clothing, experimentation, and entertainment. Visit Direct Action Everywhere on facebook and at http://directactioneverywhere.com/. Follow us on Twitter @DxEverywhere.

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