The case of Goya Foods may be regarded as an example of not only modern cancel culture but a rich history of American corporate boycotts and consumer activism. Founded by Spanish immigrants in 1936, in the present day, Goya Foods, Inc. may be regarded as the largest Hispanic-owned food company in the United States (Goya, n.d.). In addition, it is a considerable source for Latin cuisine as it produces and delivers multiple authentic products, including grains, canned beans, seafood, meat, beverages, cooking bases, marinades, sauces, dairy, confectionery, flours, oils, seasonings, olives, pantry items, and many others. Goya has been always defined as a reputable brand for its community support, charitable activities, and social influence, donating food during periods of natural disasters and launching programs dedicated to the nation’s healthy nutrition.
However, the company has faced the impact of a cancel culture after being involved in politics. In 2020, Robert Unanue, the company’s chief executive, expressed his recognition of President Trump appearing at the White House rollout of the Hispanic Prosperity Initiative that aimed to raise the living standards of the Hispanic population (Stockman, Kelly, & Medina, 2020). Praising Trump, Unanue called him an incredible builder who deserved to rule the country and compared him with his grandfather who had founded Goya Foods, Inc. These words caused an aggressive reaction of Trump’s opponents among politicians, activists, and celebrities who organized a cancellation campaign aiming to impact the public opinion and force people to refuse to purchase beans and other products of Goya Foods.
In the present day, supply chains have become longer due to a more complex structure with the presence of multiple components and responsibilities. At the same time, they are weaker as the disruption of even one component may lead to the disruption of the whole supply chain (Bowersox, 2019). In the case of Goya Foods, a cancel culture-related boycott led to the loss of sales due to changed customer behavior and the destruction of the company’s reputation. Therefore, financial losses forced the company to fire some workers and negatively impact the working conditions of others. In addition, the company’s losses have affected supply chain partners who were interested in cooperation with brands with the “deepest pockets” (Bowersox, 2019). As a result, supply chain disruptions connected with workers’ and partners’ turnover led to distribution delays and the rise of prices. Moreover, as previously mentioned, the campaign against Goya Foods was launched and it was launched online. Thus, it is possible to state that technologies contributed to the process of cancellation as they help activists spread their message.
At the same time, the company has managed to minimize the effect of cancellation through its particular attitude to it. First of all, it did not pay attention to it and emphasize its contribution to the solution of serious social issues -for instance, it did not address the issue at all, “instead using social media channels to share recipes for mango ice pops and bean salad, and to promote its charitable efforts” (Heil, 2020, para. 13). In addition, Unanue called political activist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez an employee of the month for her efforts to cancel the company as they attracted more attention and customers to it. In addition, Goya foods were supported by Donald and Ivanka Trump along with their proponents. Finally, as Unanue underlined, the Hispanic community of the United States is more reasonable to pay attention to the inappropriate words of one person.
Bowersox, D. (2019). Supply chain logistics management (5th ed.). McGraw-Hill Higher Education.
Goya. (n.d.). History. Goya. Web.
Heil, E. (2020). The Goya boycott could impact the brand, experts say — just not the way you think. The Washington Post. Web.
Stockman, F., Kelly, K., & Medina, J. (2020). How buying beans became a political statement. The New York Times. Web.