Perseverance pays off: on January 20, 2020, the French company Pernod-Ricard finally decided to end its support and its communication in favour of the bullfighting tradition, also known as ‘Corrida’. The announcement comes after more than a decade of pressure on the company, including from Fondation Franz Weber, together with Alliance Anticorrida and other organizations, to end the group’s shameful ‘sponsorship’ of bullfighting.
In 2009, Fondation Franz Weber, together with Alliance Anticorrida and other organizations, launched the campaign “Say NO to Corrida support!” (In French: “Non au soutien des corridas !”). The organizations have waged a persistent campaign, letting the Pernod-Ricard Group know again and again that consumers are not satisfied. Since the start of this campaign, thousands of letters of protest, through which consumers have declared that they will boycott Pernod-Ricard products if support for bullfighting continues, have been sent to the company.
The idea was not to harm Pernod-Ricard, but only to educate consumers. Pernod-Ricard is the world’s second largest producer of spirits by size, and owns some of the best-selling spirits brands in the world (such as Ballentine’s, Absolut Vodka and Beefeater) – the group was previously one of the biggest supporters of the bullfighting community, and actively supported many bullfighting clubs.
By inevitably associating the name, popularity and financial solidity of Pernod-Ricard with an activity strongly condemned by the majority of European citizens, animal protection organizations have put the company at increasing risk that its customers, concerned about animal well-being, would end up completely abandoning the company’s products, and obtain spirits from a competitor. Since 2009, more than 300,000 letters of protest have been printed for the campaign (in French, English, Spanish, Dutch, Portuguese and German). Persistently sending these letters was decisive in the change of management of the company, and brought about this important victory in the fight against animal suffering! What a great start into this new decade of fighting the cruel ‘Corrida’ tradition!