Puerto Rico

Former Chicago Rep. Gutierrez Asks People to Boycott Goya After CEO Praises Trump

Almost immediately after Goya's CEO spoke at the White House Thursday, #BoycottGoya, #GoyaFoods and #Goyaway began trending on social media

Luis Gutiérrez

Former Chicago U.S. Rep. Luis Gutiérrez has decided he's no longer buying products from Goya Foods after its CEO praised President Donald Trump at a White House event, and has asked others to join him in boycotting the company.

In a video posted to Facebook Friday, a visibily emotional Gutiérrez is seen standing by his pantry, which has several canned Goya products inside. The former congressman accused the company of exploiting Puerto Ricans for centuries.

"...Now you wish to bring about more of Donald Trump who hates us, despised us and has treated the Puerto Rican people with such cruelty," Gutiérrez said. "No more Goya. Boycott Goya. I will never buy another product of yours again."

Goya was founded in Manhattan in 1936 by Don Prudencio Unanue and his wife Carolina, immigrants from Spain. The company calls itself the largest Hispanic-owned food company in the United States.

Robert Unanue, a grandson and now Goya CEO, spoke at a Rose Garden event announcing a “Hispanic Prosperity Initiative” on Thursday.

“We all truly blessed, at the same time, to have have a leader like President Trump who is a builder,” Unanue said standing at a podium beside Trump.

Almost immediately, #BoycottGoya, #GoyaFoods and #Goyaway began trending on social media platforms like Twitter, with scorn coming seemingly from all directions, including some big political names.

That backlash was countered online by Trump supporters, showing how any brand whether they make clothing or, as Goya does, beans, olive oil and adobo, faces potential danger ahead of what is already a highly contentious election.

Those pushing for a boycott of Goya products cited Trump's history of derogatory comments and harsh policies toward Hispanics, most notably, the administration's policy of separating immigrant families at the U.S.-Mexico border.

Unanue stood by his words in the Rose Garden during a Friday appearance on “Fox & Friends."

“I’m not apologizing for saying — and especially when you’re called by the president of the United States — you’re gonna say, ‘no I’m sorry I’m busy no thank you?," Unanue said. “I didn’t say that to the Obamas and I didn’t say that to President Trump.”

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