Bullfeathers

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, March 1999:

PURCHASE, N.Y.– – With
Pepsi-Cola signs and banners still
prominent in major Mexican bullrings,
Pepsi is conceding nothing to the boycott
called in late 1998 by SHARC and
Last Chance for Animals––not even that
Pepsi advertising is a significant source
of revenue for the bullring operators.
Insisted Pepsi corporate
spokesperson Brad Shaw to ANIMAL
PEOPLE on February 10, “Pepsi does
not sponsor or endorse bullfighting.
Our position in that has not changed.”
Other Pepsi representatives
have told protesters that the Pepsi ads in
bullrings are placed by Mexican distributors,
over whom Pepsi has no control.


But an April 1997 news item
forwarded to ANIMAL PEOPLE a n d
CHARC by Tony and Vicki Moore of
the British anti-bullfighting group Fight
Animal Abuse and Cruel Entertainment
told an apparently different story.
At the time, the Lima-based
activist organization Amigos des
A n i m a l e s was unsuccessfully trying to
halt Peruvian federal subsidies for bull
breeders and bullring operators.
According to the clipping,
“The Pepsi-Cola Company has given
instructions that its representatives in
Peru, and in other Latin American
countries, stop doing publicity with, or
sponsoring bullfights or cockfights.
Brad Shaw, of Pepsi, stated support of
‘bullfights and similar sports goes
against the policy followed by the
Pepsi-Cola Company.’”
Shaw did not answer repeated
inquiries from ANIMAL PEOPLE a s
to why Pepsi has apparently not moved
to enforce this instruction in Mexico.
However, bullfighting is the
third most popular spectator sport in
Mexico, albeit far behind baseball and
soccer. Brought from Spain to both
Mexico and Peru about 450 years ago,
bullfighting never caught on with the
Andean people. Bulls were seen as a
symbol of much resented Spanish
dominion, while the Andean condor
symbolized the Andeans themselves, so
certain villages formerly held fights
between bulls and condors, who were
tethered to the bulls’ backs, but A N IMAL
PEOPLE has received no word
of any such events since 1988. There
are two major bullrings in Peru––one at
Acho, built in 1766, and one at Rimac,
built in 1992. Both are near Lima.
In other current bull news,
Spanish bullfighters are reportedly complaining
that a European Union ban on
transnational traffic in animals possibly
exposed to bovine spongiform encephalopathy
has left them short of bulls to
kill. About half the 1,500 bulls killed in
Spain last year came from Portugal.

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