Protect Supermarket Shoppers from Unknowingly Funding Coal Pollution

Target: Rosauers Supermarkets

Goal: Ensure Rosauers stands up for Northwest communities affected by dangerous coal export projects

Rosauers Supermarkets owns 21 stores in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Montana. For sustainably minded shoppers who want to avoid larger “big box” stores, Rosauers serves as a smaller, more local alternative. This puts Rosauers in a good position to influence other companies that do business in the Northwest, and that sell their products on Rosauers’ shelves. Right now, Rosauers has a chance to do just this, by urging one of the world’s largest candy makers to divest from the biggest new fossil fuel scheme in the Northwest: coal exports.

If coal companies get their way, the entire four-state region where Rosauers operates will become a coal export corridor, with dozens of open-top coal trains rolling daily through communities from eastern Montana to the West Coast. Many towns where Rosauers has stores, including Missoula, Montana, Spokane, Washington, and Hood River, Oregon, would be directly affected by coal dust and diesel pollution from increased coal train traffic, and congestion caused when trains hold up car traffic. Meanwhile, the Northwest’s stunning outdoor areas and fertile agricultural zones are threatened by climate change caused by burning coal. Rosauers can help by asking Forrest Mars, Jr., partial owner of the candy company Mars, Inc., to divest from coal export projects.

Mars, Jr. is using money from Mars, Inc. to finance the Tongue River Railroad in eastern Montana, which if built would transport coal to existing rail lines that pass through towns in Montana, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington. Rosauers carries Mars candy brands like M&M’s, Milky Way, and Snickers on their shelves. Mars’ investment in the Tongue River Railroad means when shoppers buy these products at Rosauers, they may unknowingly be helping to fund coal exports.

It’s not Rosauers’ fault that Mars made a bad investment in one of the dirtiest energy projects on the planet. But as a company based in the Pacific Northwest, Rosauers has a special opportunity — and a responsibility — to let Mars know its customers are concerned about coal exports. By communicating the concerns of Rosauers shoppers to Mars, Rosauers can help ensure its own customers don’t have to worry their money will be used to fund coal.

Sign below to ask Rosauers to do the right thing for its customers, by requesting that Mars divest from coal exports.


Dear Rosauers,

We, the undersigned, request that you send a letter to Forrest Mars, Jr. and Mars, Inc. urging the Mars family to divest from coal export projects like the Tongue River Railroad. Increased coal train traffic threatens communities throughout the Pacific Northwest region, including many of the towns where Rosauers stores are located. As a company based in the Northwest, we believe Rosauers is perfectly positioned to let Mars know that Northwest shoppers don’t want their dollars going to finance coal pollution.

During the last couple years, thousands of people in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Montana have turned out to public hearings, rallies, and other events to oppose coal exports. Many of these same people shop at Rosauers.  The harmful effects of coal exports are clearly something Rosauers customers care about. By communicating this to Mars, Rosauers can show your customers that you care about their concerns.

We ask that Rosauers send a personalized letter to Forrest Mar, Jr. and Mars, Inc., communicating that coal exports is an issue of concern to Rosauers shoppers, and that the financial link to coal exports is damaging to the image of Mars products that Rosauers carries. Please take this step and let Mars know that coal exports and customer satisfaction simply don’t mix.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: gregwest98 via Flickr

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One Comment

  1. Regardless of who is at fault, Mars have the responsibility of letting their customers know just where the money is going & what it is being used for. I’m sure there would be many boycotts if people knew it was going toward keeping a dirty coal powered station in operation. The financial link to coal exports is something the customers certainly do not want & Mars does have to be held responsible for this happening. Please explain FULLY so there can be no redress at a later stage..

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