June 25, 2014
Whole Foods Market, Inc.
550 Bowie Street
Austin, TX 78703-4644
Dear Mr. Mackey,
On behalf of House Rabbit Society’s 32 chapters, and members in 50 states and internationally, we strongly urge you to cancel the planned sale of rabbit meat in your northern California Whole Foods stores.
There are approximately 9 million pet rabbits in the United States, and that number is increasing every day. Indeed, after cats and dogs, rabbits are becoming one of America’s most popular pets; they are the third most popular companion mammal. House Rabbit Society, founded in 1988, is an international rabbit rescue and education organization headquartered in the San Francisco Bay Area. In 25 years, House Rabbit Society has saved the lives of over 30,000 rabbits. Our website has over 400,000 hits each month from individuals interested in rabbits as house pets. These people would be as repelled by the idea of eating a rabbit as would most Americans of eating a cat or a dog for dinner.
In addition, there are millions of Americans who don’t live with a pet rabbit who also view eating rabbits as an abhorrent practice.
Most people now know that rabbits are intelligent, funny, curious, and emotionally engaging animals, whose role in millions of American households rivals the family’s dog or cat. Our supporters do not want a cherished companion animal to be slaughtered and sold at Whole Foods.
In order to give your customers yet another animal to eat, thousands of rabbits will die so that Whole Foods can profit. The rabbits raised for meat are exactly the same as the rabbits kept in our homes.
As Americans are eating less meat now than ever before, we are saddened by the fact that Whole Foods is adding our beloved companions to the list of animals sold at the meat counter. Imagine the reaction of your customers if they saw puppy and kitten carcasses in the meat case; that’s the reaction you will receive from your customers who cherish their rabbit companions.
We are calling upon our members, supporters, website visitors, and social media followers to immediately stop shopping at Whole Foods stores until you stop selling rabbit meat. We are urging our members and supporters to contact you and Whole Foods at the above address to strongly urge you to cancel the planned sale of rabbit meat in your northern California Whole Foods stores.
We look forward to hearing from you on this matter.
Anne Martin, PhD
House Rabbit Society
Margo DeMello, PhD
House Rabbit Society
cc: Walter Robb, Co-CEO
cc: Rob Twyman, President, Northern California Region
Whole Foods Market
5980 Horton Street, Suite 200
Emeryville, CA 94608