Thursday 26 November, 2020

Chocolatier pulls products from Starlite Pharmacy

As calls increase for the public to boycott Starlite Pharmacy, one chocolatier has removed her products from the store’s three branches.

Gillian Goddard, maker of Sun eaters chocolate, announced via Instagram on Sunday that her product would no longer be available at Starlite.

“I'm going to remove the coon/sellout parts of my mentality a little towards liberation and not deliver any more product there. No more. Can I afford to lose one of my larger clients? I will feel it. Can I afford to sell self-respect, integrity and racial solidarity for a few pieces of silver? You know the answer. Some things have no price,” she said in her post.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

SUCH a transformative week! My entire life I’ve seen darker skinned people marginalized in T&T while light skinned black people looking like me - and other ethnicities with light skin and straight hair-are given more systemic access and material privilege. More shelf space, better wholesale prices, better loans, better educational opportunities (Academic articles in comments). Up to 2020 this continues at full speed. Sometimes I've fronted for other folks when needed/asked and I've had white people front for me. Right here in Trinidad. But this week something changed. Non-European heritage people with light skinned/straight haired privilege began talking racist stupidness and proving that their business success must be privilege - because intelligence was in short supply. (Article from @wired868 in comments). If these folks were just sitting in the damaged goods box it would be tolerable - but instead access to their shelf space can act as an incubator to forward their distorted beliefs. Racism is white supremacy PLUS power and privilege. Store owners and product distributors in a small economy definitely have the power to take small brands and give them the market access and cash flow to become big. Well I'm even more done than before with this crap. I had a 🍫 order packed and ready to go to Starlite. But now I'm going to remove the coon/sellout parts of my mentality a little towards liberation and not deliver any more product there. No more. Can I afford to lose one of my larger clients? I will feel it. Can I afford to sell self respect, integrity and racial solidarity for a few pieces of silver? You know the answer. Some things have no price. But I need you, racism savvy folks, to do something. I put my product in Starlite a few years ago because they had no slave-free chocolate at the time (all larger global brands use African child slaves/labor). Don’t go back to buying slave chocolate - a global situation which needs #BLM. All local chocolate is slave free and my brand @suneaters is available alongside other local chocolate in many stores. BLACK LIVES ALWAYS MATTER and economic access is a massive part of a good life. Spend your $ wisely

A post shared by Sun Eaters Organics (@suneaters) on

“Every action we take creates a culture. So keeping my product in a place openly calling black people thieves is morally wrong,” she told Loop.

“Keeping my product there would have been a statement of my values and that is my responsibility. My value drops into a pot that is Trinidad and Tobago and any action I take reinforces my value so by my saying money is more important than someone with problematic morality, I am not interested in that culture.”

Goddard said none of the products she makes which includes cocoa powder, will be available at Starlite. Her products can be ordered directly through the Alliance of Rural Communities Online Shop or can be found at places such as Uncorked, Simple Choice Mart and Vege Out among other outlets.

There have been calls for citizens to boycott Starlite following comments against the Black Lives Matter movement made by CEO Gerald Aboud on social media. One petition calling for the boycott has registered over 4700 signatures.

 Aboud subsequently apologised but over the weekend lashed out at those calling for a boycott.

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