Should auld acquaintance be forgot…

Mark Bittman, Gourmet Magazine give end of the year tips of the hat to CIW;

Two holiday-themed videos close out 2011 in the Campaign for Fair Food…

The year 2011 in the Campaign for Fair Food may ultimately be known as the year the CIW caught the attention of the food movement, with high profile articles and appearances giving farmworkers an important new voice – and the issue of human rights an important new place — in the growing debate over how we produce and sell food in this country.

But that didn’t make it any less of a surprise to see two of the food world’s most important voices give the CIW prominent mention in their end-of-the-year lists of food organizations to support in 2012.

In an article entitled “10 Exceptional Food-Related Charities,” (12/14/11), Gourmet Magazine included the CIW in a list including such august organizations as the United States Fund for UNICEF and the Center for Science in the Public Interest. Here’s the excerpt on the CIW:

Coalition of Immokalee Workers

A group like the CIW is a good reminder that there can be hardship at both ends of the food-supply chain—in getting enough food to eat and in growing it. Readers of Barry Estabrook, author of Tomatoland and contributor to Gourmet Live, will already be well acquainted with this community-based farm workers’ organization and its outsize accomplishments. From its home in southern Florida—source of winter tomatoes and other crops for much of the nation—the CIW has won landmark agreements with industry and major fast-food chains to significantly improve worker wages and conditions. The coming year’s challenge: widely implementing the CIW’s Fair Food Code of Conduct in the fields. What the group’s site doesn’t yet make obvious is that it is a registered 501(c)(3) charity and that donations are tax-deductible; give it time—right now, it’s busy putting an admirable 83% of its funds into programs and only 3% into fund-raising.” read more

Meanwhile, in an article entitled “Food Gifts that Matter,” (12/21/11), Mark Bittman shared his own list with his extensive readership, writing, “if you’re thinking about making a donation this year to brighten the national or global food landscape, here’s a list of organizations where your gifts will be well spent.” His mention of the CIW reads:

Coalition of Immokalee Workers: Fights for fair wages, better treatment, better housing and greater respect for low-wage immigrant farm workers in Florida. CIW also works for stronger laws and enforcement protecting workers’ rights and the right to organize.” read more

Finally, Fair Food activists were far from silent this holiday season, and we leave you in these last days of 2011 with links to two holiday-themed videos, one from Philadelphia drawing links between the Jewish harvest festival tradition of Sukkot and the Campaign for Fair Food, the other a bit of traditional caroling fun from the Rio Grande Valley in Texas:

We hope you and all those you love have a very happy new year, and we look forward to working together in 2012 for still more historic advances in the movement for Fair Food.