Ben & Jerry's Takes on Trump's Regressive Agenda With Pecan Resist

by Rudy Sanchez on 10/31/2018 | 3 Minute Read

Ben & Jerry’s, makers of premium ice cream, is launching a new flavor called “Pecan Resist,” a limited release, which supports, according to the company, “a more just and equitable nation, fighting the President’s regressive agenda.”

Under the lid is chocolate ice cream with white & dark fudge chunks, pecans, walnuts & fudge covered almonds. The pint graphics were designed by Bay-Area activist and artist Favianna Rodriguez, whose art and advocacy includes immigration, women’s rights, and genetically modified foods.

“As an artist, I know well the power of culture, and I recognize when a business is using its platform to push for love, justice and a green planet,” Rodriguez said in a press release. “Let’s declare our resistance, march in the streets, and elect a new generation of change makers.”

Ben & Jerry’s is supporting a number of progressive organizations with their latest flavor like Color of Change, a group who design campaigns powerful enough to “end practices that unfairly hold Black people back, and champion solutions that move us all forward.” There’s also Honor the Earth, an organization that works on issues of climate change, renewable energy, and environmental justice with Indigenous communities, as well as Neta, one of the fastest-growing independent media platforms led by people of color along the Texas-Mexico border. And finally, there’s Women’s March, a group committed to harnessing the political power of diverse women and their communities to create transformative social change.

As part of this limited release, Ben & Jerry’s is donating $25,000 to each of these organizations.

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Ben & Jerry’s is no stranger to supporting progressive causes and groups, including climate change, LGBTQ rights, GMO labeling, racial justice, refugee and immigration advocacy, and overturning “Citizen’s United,” among many other causes. Ben & Jerry’s has also used other flavors to support charities and causes. A portion of sales from “Americone Dream” go to support The Stephen Colbert AmeriCone Dream Fund, which supports causes “Late Show” host Stephen Colbert cares about, and “Phish Food,” which supports environmental efforts in Vermont’s Lake Champlain’s watershed.

Despite the company’s long tradition of supporting progressive causes they care about, this is perhaps the first time they’ve singled out a particular politician and his agenda. Unsurprisingly, supporters of President Trump expressed their displeasure on social media. Posts on one of the most prominent online fan clubs for the President, “The_Donald” subreddit, is a mix of calls for boycotts, anger, ridicule, and predictions that this will be the downfall of the brand despite decades of supporting “leftie” causes.

Twitter users seemed more unaware of Ben & Jerry’s progressive history, although were more polite in their disapproval of the ice cream company’s latest foray into activism through yummy frozen desserts.

Releasing “Pecan Resist” a week before the US midterm elections is likely a deliberate and politically inspired move on Ben & Jerry’s part, although it’s unclear how much of an impact “Pecan Resist” will have on both the President’s agenda and the elections. It is also unknown whether pro-Trump boycotts will impact the Unilever-owned company’s sales. Previous calls for boycotts of products seen as anti-Trump seem to have had little impact. Even the most recent Nike boycotts didn’t stop the company from seeing a 31% increase in sales.

It is also not the first time Ben & Jerry’s has been the target of pro-Trump and conservative groups. In October 2016, when the company released a statement in support of the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement, Blue Lives Matter, a group formed in response to counter them with a pro-Trump, pro-Republican and conservative slant, called for a boycott of Ben & Jerry’s.

Seems like those calling for an altogether brand-new boycott must have forgotten about the previous boycott.

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