When it comes to sustainability practices Jimmy John’s is a great business. Each restaurant sources its produce from local farmers, and most of the packaging used is made from recycled, earth-friendly material.
Its the actions of the CEO, Jimmy John Liautaud has done, outside the business. Mr. Liautaud is a big game hunter, and has public posted photos of him posing with elephants, rhinos and other endangered animals he shot. Mr. Liautaud has admitted to these photos being true and said this in a Chicago Tribune article,
“I choose to hunt and I choose to fish,” he said. “Everything I’ve done has been totally legal. And the meat has been eaten, if not by me than by someone I’m with. I don’t hunt big African game anymore.”
For some people this is enough to not boycott Jimmy John’s. Many people argue trophy hunting helps pay for the management of nature reserves and local communities, often much more than tourism or government funding. According to an 2013 Economist at Large Report, “Advocates for the African trophy hunting industry claim that hunting revenues provide benefits to rural communities. Responding to calls to list African lions on the US Endangered Species Act, Safari Club International officials stated: Hunters and hunting actually benefit Africa’s lions as well as its humans. Revenues from hunting generate $200 million annually in remote rural areas of Africa. (Rudolph and Hosmer 2011)”
Other people argue trophy hunting is inhumane and has gone too far killing as many as 400 lions and 750 elephants every year just from rich Americans. According to the same 2013 Economist at Large Report, “Research published by the pro-hunting International Council for Game and Wildlife Conservation and the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, supported by other authors, finds that hunting companies contribute only 3% of their revenue to communities living in hunting areas. The vast majority of their expenditure does not accrue to local people and businesses, but to firms, government agencies and individuals located internationally or in national capitals…expenditure accruing to government agencies rarely reaches local communities due to corruption and other spending requirements.”
For people who want to oppose businesses whose CEO personal profits went to killing endangered animals and who want to draw attention to the horrible realities of big game hunting, may want to choose to boycott Jimmy John’s.
Photos Mr. Liautaud has posted on his Facebook.
Twitter Hashtag: #boycottjimmyjohns