Get ready for a rant...
So I’ve been following a company called Native American Natural Foods LLC, and everything they do is awesome. They are run on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, creating jobs on the reservation while all the proceeds of selling their products goes back to the Lakota. Their main product (which is delicious) is the Tanka bar. It’s made of buffalo and cranberry in the original flavor.
The flip-side of this is thunderbird energetica. I’ve posted about them before, but I’ll mention why I don’t like them. Two white folks from Texas decided to make a new kind of natural granola bar with a trendy name. They appropriate everything possible from Natives, including having bar flavors like “almond cookie pow-wow.” This particular bars description includes talk of powerful spirit animals and ingredients blessed by a shaman. If that isn’t enough, I just came across their sister company, Epic bar. Epic Bar uses, well, let’s see, Bison and cranberry, but it’s okay because they put bacon in it too. This is the description on their site for the bar: “This unique, modern-day take on a Plains Indian staple food known as pemmican is sure to exceed your energy demands.” When called out on their complete and utter ignorance and appropriation, they use the same canned response native folks always hear: “…but we’re honoring you dude.”
Now if you are going to whole foods and you want to buy a good buffalo bar that helps support the Lakota by creating jobs and boosting their economy, then buy Tanka Bars. If you want to buy a piece of trash that makes a mockery of all native tribes, buy Thunderbird or Epic.
So what I’m saying is DON’T BUY THUNDERBIRD OR EPIC.