News Archives

Mexican tomato industry

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Now we know: Explosive new article in Harper’s Magazine reveals Wendy’s tomato supplier in Mexico…

… And the supplier’s history is not pretty: Bioparques was the subject of a massive slavery prosecution in 2013.Harper’s Magazine released an explosive new article this week in its online pages that did some digging into Wendy’s tomato supply chain in Mexico, and what Andrew Cockburn, Harper’s Washington Editor, found out was in fact quite disturbing.  [Unless you haven’t visited this site in a while, you’ll recall that Wendy’s stopped buying tomatoes from Florida altogether following the implementation of the Fair Food Program here and shifted its purchases to Mexico.  Wendy’s decision to abandon its Florida suppliers was one of the principal reasons for […]

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Running from Responsibility: Wendy’s flees Florida rather than support Fair Food Program’s human rights advances…

 While Fair Food Program farms in Florida continue to raise the bar for human rights in the US agricultural industry, outrageous human rights violations on farms outside the Program continue to fester.Why then has Wendy’s abandoned the Florida tomato industry altogether?  And where are they buying their tomatoes today?Last month, when consumers across the country called on Wendy’s to show farmworkers some love on Valentine’s Day and join the Fair Food Program, many Fair Food activists picked up their phones and called Wendy’s headquarters directly to express their concerns.  What they heard was a bit of a shock, to put it […]

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ANALYSIS: The Fresh Market agreement, the LA Times series, and the preferential option for Fair Food…

[hupso title=”ANALYSIS: @TheFreshMarket agreement, @LATimes series and the option for #FairFood” url=”http://ciw-online.org/blog/2015/01/fresh-market-analysis/”] Fair Food Program in Florida’s tomato industry points the way for Mexican produce industry out of human rights crisis toward 21st century social responsibility;  The question remains: Given Mexico’s deeper societal problems, is reform even possible? We’d like to begin this post with something a bit different, a real time anecdote straight from the Fair Food Program’s data base.  The data base is a rich, unparalleled compilation of information about he Florida tomato industry compiled over time through worker complaints, interviews, and investigations.  This January 6th, a woman called […]

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Part Three: A 21st century Christmas Carol for the food industry?…

[hupso title=”PART 3: A 21st century #Christmas Carol for the food industry?” url=”http://ciw-online.org/blog/2015/01/21st-cent-christmas-carol-3/”] Business as usual is no longer an option for the US food industry in the face of outrageous human rights violations in Mexico’s produce industry; Food industry leaders must leverage their unequaled purchasing power — reward ethical producers, reject those unwilling to implement real reforms — to raise the bar for human rights in Mexico. Remembering that today is the eleventh day of Christmas (making this third and final series installment still timely)… Before we conclude our three-part series on the LA Times investigation into labor rights violations in Mexico’s fields […]

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Part Two: A 21st century Christmas Carol for the food industry?…

[hupso title=”Part 2: 21st century #Christmas Carol for the food industry?” url=”http://ciw-online.org/blog/2014/12/21st-cent-christmas-carol-2/“] The market must be a force for real social change, not complicit in grower-led efforts to sweep child labor, violence against workers, and debt servitude under the rug; Real social responsibility in Mexico’s fields will remain a distant dream until country’s deeper ills are addressed, workers free to play leading role in reforms… First, a quick review. In Part One of this three-part series, we looked at the response by produce industry insider Jim Prevor, also known as the “Perishable Pundit,” to the appalling labor conditions in Mexico’s produce […]

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Newsweek: “The Fair Food Program Should Be Extended to Mexico”…

[hupso title=”.@Newsweek: The @FairFoodProgram should be extended to Mexico…” url=”http://ciw-online.org/blog/2014/12/newsweek-ffp/”] This month’s LA Times investigative series, “Product of Mexico: Hardship on Mexico’s farms, a bounty for U.S. tables,”  sent shockwaves through the food industry with its explosive, multi-media documentation of appalling abuses on Mexican produce farms ranging from widespread child labor to modern-day slavery.  Given the key role Mexican produce exports have come to play in the US food market over the past two decades — with Mexican tomatoes, for example, found today on everything from fast-food burgers and subs to salad plates in celebrity chef restaurants from LA to New York City — the […]

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A 21st century Christmas Carol for the food industry?… Part One

[hupso title=”21st Century #Christmas Carol for the food industry, Part 1…” url=”http://ciw-online.org/blog/2014/12/21st-cent-christmas-carol-1/”]The LA Times grabs the food industry by the hand and drags it on a nightmare tour through the inhumanity of Mexico’s vegetable fields… How will this modern-day Christmas Carol end?  Will the industry respond with a collective “Bah Humbug!”? Or might a “God bless us, every one!” be in the cards?First, a little bit of holiday season history.“An Appeal to the People of England, on behalf of the Poor Man’s Child” was the title of a political pamphlet that Charles Dickens planned to write in 1843 following the publication of a parliamentary report in Britain […]

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“I work because… we need money to eat things”…

[hupso title=”I work because we need money to eat things… Part 3 of @LATimes’ breaking investigative report of #Mexican tomato industry” url=”http://ciw-online.org/blog/2014/12/la-times-3/”] LA Times series continues with a focus on child labor, company stores in Mexican produce industry… The portrait of an industry out of control continued to be filled out this past weekend with the final two installments in the explosive four-part LA Times investigative series, “Product of Mexico: Hardship on Mexico’s farms, a bounty for US tables.”  On Friday, the third installment focused on the role of company stores in perpetuating farmworker poverty in Mexico, driving workers into debt […]

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“They treated us like slaves”…

[hupso title=”They treated us like slaves… 2nd installment of @latimes investigative report on devastating conditions in #Mexican tomato industry ” url=”http://ciw-online.org/blog/2014/12/latimes-2/”] Devastating tale of criminal brutality and cruel indifference at one labor camp in Mexico’s tomato industry is a case study in the abject failure of the traditional model of Corporate Social Responsibility First things first.  If you haven’t done so already, put aside whatever else you might be doing at the moment and go read the full second installment of the explosive four-part investigative series in the LA Times entitled “A Product of Mexico: Hardship on Mexican Farms, a Bounty on US Tables”.  Take your […]

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Updates: Human rights crisis in Mexico and “Food Chains” release countdown begins…

[hupso title=”UPDATES: #HumanRights crisis in #Iguala #Mexico & @FoodChainsFilm release countdown begins…” url=”http://ciw-online.org/blog/2014/10/food-chains-mexico/“] “Enough!  Mexico Is Ready to Explode”…   Two weeks ago we brought you an extended analysis of the human rights crisis in Mexico and its impact on the agricultural industry there.  In a post entitled “Fear and Fair Cannot Coexist,” we wrote: Mass graves.  Horribly disfigured corpses.  Police complicity in the ultraviolence of all-powerful drug gangs. Since 2005, stories like these have played out across Mexico’s headlines day after day, month after month, year after year.  But the details of last month’s mass killing and disappearance of […]

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