Donald Trump Jr has boasted on Instagram about his dinner cooked with Goya ingredients, as the row about a boycott of the company rumbles on and his sister Ivanka is accused of violating White House ethics for promoting the products.
On Thursday he said that he had enjoyed a meal made with the produce, which has been subject for the past week to a boycott ever since the company CEO said the country was ‘blessed’ to have Donald Trump as its leader.
‘Just had a great dinner Kimberly prepared,’ he said, referring to his girlfriend, former Fox News presenter Kimberly Guilfoyle.
‘Lot of Goya products, which was pretty awesome. Just had a great pork roast. It was very good.’
His video came as his sister Ivanka was accused of breaking White House ethics rules by tweeting her support for the company.
‘If it’s Goya, it has to be good,’ she tweeted, echoing the company slogan.
Donald Trump Jr Thursday posted a video discussing his ‘awesome’ meal with Goya produce
Ivanka Trump on Tuesday evening tweeted her support for the embattled company
Under the rules government officials are barred from using their public office to endorse specific products or groups.
The White House defended her tweet.
‘Only the media and the cancel culture movement would criticize Ivanka for showing her personal support for a company that has been unfairly mocked, boycotted and ridiculed for supporting this administration – one that has consistently fought for and delivered for the Hispanic community,’ said Carolina Hurley, White House spokesperson.
‘Ivanka is proud of this strong, Hispanic-owned business with deep roots in the US and has every right to express her personal support.’
Her father also tweeted his support for Goya, but as president, he is exempt from many of the rules that federal workers must follow.
Donald Trump followed his daughter’s lead and tweeted his support for Goya
Walter Shaub, former director of the Office of Government Ethics, said the tweet and photo amounted to ‘an official campaign by the Trump administration to support Goya, making it all the more clear that Ivanka’s tweet was a violation of the misuse of position regulations’.
Shaub left government in 2017 after clashing with the Trump administration over ethics rules.
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (Crew) said the rules were clear.
‘The ethics rules for executive branch employees say that you can’t use your official position to promote a private business,’ said Noah Bookbinder, executive director of Crew.
‘It’s pretty clear that the context in which this came out is that Goya had been supportive of the Trump administration and the Trump administration was being supportive of Goya.’
The row began after the president hosted a group of Hispanic supporters including politicians and business magnates at the White House on July 9.
Goya Foods CEO Robert Unanue attended the event and used the occasion to announce a donation of a million cans of chickpeas and a million pounds of other food to food banks.
‘We’re all truly blessed at the same time to have a leader like President Trump, who is a builder,’ said Unanue, speaking at the White House.
Robert Unanue, Goya CEO, on July 6 said the US was ‘truly blessed’ to have Trump as president
The remark set off a wave of criticism of New Jersey-based Goya, founded in 1936 by European immigrants.
Some called for consumers to consider other brands in the canned food aisle.
Julian Castro, the former Democrat contender for the presidency, tweeted: ‘@GoyaFoods has been a staple of so many Latino households for generations. Now their CEO, Bob Unanue, is praising a president who villainizes and maliciously attacks Latinos for political gain.
‘Americans should think twice before buying their products.’
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, representative for New York, suggested working around Goya products when creating dishes with traditional Puerto Rican seasoning.
‘Oh look, it’s the sound of me Googling ‘how to make your own Adobo,’ she said.
Unanue doubled down on his remarks several days later, telling Fox News on July 10 he stood by his decision to praise Trump.
Asked by Laura Ingraham whether he was going to apologize for that, he replied: ‘Hell no.’
He continued: ‘We can either take a path of building and loving and producing, being prosperous. That is what my grandfather came, 18 years old from Spain, to the land of opportunity to live the American dream and to prosper.
‘Hispanic businesses are growing at three times the rates of any other business.
‘And so the future is in our hands, and we have the opportunity to either do well or to destroy. And let’s do well.’
Robert Unanue appeared on Fox News to defend his remarks praising Donald Trump
Data about the impact of the boycott is not yet available, but Trump supporters have taken to filming empty shelves, cleared of all Goya products, as a so-called ‘Buy-cott’ is announced to back the company.
Several Go Fund Mes have sprung up in support of Goya.
One, started by Casey Harper in Arlington, Virginia, has raised almost $300,000 to buy Goya products, which will then be sent to food banks.
‘We have identified the first of multiple food pantries to receive a donation. Turns out buying and distributing hundreds of thousands of pounds of food is not easy, but it’s a great problem to have!’ he wrote on the page.