Following US president Donald Trump’s decision to build a wall along the border with Mexico and his call to US companies to return their factories to the US mainland, Mexicans have begun a campaign asking for boycott of American products.
A social media campaign is gaining momentum urging Mexicans not to buy products from the Starbucks, McDonald’s, Wal-Mart, Coca-Cola and other US companies.
The campaign is calling for Mexican consumers to unite and choose locally-produced goods instead of the imported ones. It is also asking for creating micro-markets with friends and neighbors, buying fresh and healthy produce from local shops and this way stimulate country’s economy and “punish government policies that attack Mexico and Mexicans.”
According to local media reports, at least one Mexican restaurant has already announced it will stop using American products and base its menu on locally-produced goods and a couple of large Mexican corporations will no longer purchase American-made vehicles.
Although the actual damage is still hard to measure, a Mexico City-based Starbucks shift manager told TIME magazine that he’s already seen a 10% decrease in customers at his store.
Earlier this month, a Mexican state governor had said his administration would no longer buy cars from US auto maker Ford, calling on others to do the same after the company abruptly cancelled a planned investment in the country.
“It’s time for Mexicans to show what we’re made of,” Alejandro Moreno, governor of the southeastern state of Campeche, had said. “Actions like this should multiply across the country.”
Seeking to quell the strengthening social media campaign, Starbucks defended itself saying it had invested millions in the country, created more than 7,000 jobs, and that its local unit is Mexican-owned.
In a statement, Starbucks said its Mexican operator Alsea has some 560 stores across Mexico, representing an investment of 5bn pesos and sells Arabica coffee beans harvested in the southern Mexican state of Chiapas around the world.