Canadians urged to boycott Chiquita brands

Dec. 20, 2011 at 8:19 AM
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OTTAWA, Dec. 20 (UPI) -- Some Canadian federal ministers want a national boycott of Chiquita Brands International products over its decision to boycott fuel from Alberta oil sands.

The company, based in Cincinnati, announced it would avoid buying fuel for its truck fleet that originated in Alberta's controversial oil or tar sands, prompting outrage among politicians and oil producers, the Toronto Star reported.

Conservative Immigration Minister Jason Kenney and Public Works Minister Rona Ambrose were among the politicians calling for a boycott of Chiquita bananas, other fruit and pre-packaged salads.

The oil industry-sponsored group, aware of Chiquita's intentions since September, released a radio ad calling the food company a "foreign" bully and questioning its ethics.

"The Chiquita banana company says it's boycotting oil from Canada's oil sands," the ad says. "Apparently they like oil from OPEC dictatorships better."

Chiquita spokesman Ed Loyd told Postmedia News the company was focusing strictly on fuel derived from the oil sands.

"We have commitments to reduce our carbon footprint across a whole range of activities. That certainly does not mean in any sense that we have 'boycotted' Canadian fuel oil," Loyd said.

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