Make Noise at Rainbow Grocery

After decades of being a vegetarian grocery store, Rainbow Grocery has decided to lease the space of their outdoor cafe to a restaurant that serves animals’ bodies. The owners also keep backyard chickens and are part of the movement that idealizes certain forms of animal husbandry and lowers the bar on what we consider cruelty.

Chickens, even if they’re in your backyard, want to live. No animal wants to die from the butcher’s knife. If you would not stand for “backyard dogs” being slaughtered and served up as meals, don’t stand for it here either. We are not entitled to the lives and bodies of other animals, and at Millahcayotl we are thoroughly disappointed that Rainbow Grocery will now promote the idea that we are.

Inside Scoop SF also reports that the owners of the restaurant will tend to the native garden at Rainbow. Indigenous people in Mexico call chickens “cashlan”, a term that originates from “Castillano” and is used to refer to anything Spanish or Western, i.e. of the colonizers. Make no mistake: backyard chickens represent both animal cruelty and the colonization of North American food systems. In a sleight of hand, they are often packaged along with trendy talk of planting native species and decolonizing our environments. This selling point could not be more distasteful.

Vegan workers and co-owners of the store report that none of them were consulted on this development, and they have reacted with discontent to what was put forth as a fait accompli. If you are in the Bay Area, please go to Rainbow Grocery and fill out comment cards urging them to not go forth with this plan, and to rent the space to a vegan business instead. Speak to the workers, make some noise.