Hello from stormy Kingston, Ontario!
The seafood tour rolled into a gloomy looking Kingston today for Day Four of the Seafood Tour where Greenpeace Activists directly confronted Costco Wholesale over their failure to protect our oceans by selling Redlist seafood products (that's fish that we've identified as being at the most risk of overfishing).
Despite worries about security measures, our creative and brave activists found their way inside the Costco and quickly executed the action. They:
- gathered all the redlisted canned tuna for sale into a shopping cart
- chained shut the freezers selling other redlisted species such as Atlantic salmon and tiger shrimp
- marked off the area with caution tape reading "OCEANS CRIME SCENE" (pictured); and
- floated a banner to the store's roof reading "Don't Buy, Don't Sell Redlist Fish"
Meanwhile, outside, it was business as usual for the rest of our team who set up the giant Tuna Skeleton and Sustainability Meter (showing Costco's failing grade) and began canvassing the area. It was great to see how welcoming customers were to us and how receptive they were to our message. Many shoppers told us that they were curious about what they should do about seafood sustainability when shopping, but didn't know where to find the information. Good thing we were there!
The day turned exciting when at least ten police cruisers descended on our peaceful demonstration. Two officers were even dressed in SWAT gear! While we're obviously flattered by all the attention, we couldn't quite get what was so threatening about encouraging customers to help protect our oceans.
Our activists were removed from inside the store and the whole team was threatened with mass arrest if we did not vacate the premises. Bruce, our Executive Director, bought us all enough time by negotiating with the store's manager for the media to show and calm the police down. We got great coverage from local TV, radio, and newspapers - check back for some links!
To top it all off, when we moved our campaign to public property at the store's driveway entrance, we were greeted with honks of support from cars driving by. Thanks Kingston!
All in all, no arrests, great coverage, and a strong message for Costco. A great fourth day!