The Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW) and the Florida Tomato Growers Exchange (FTGE) signed an agreement on November 16, 2010 that will extend the CIW’s Fair Food principles to more than 90 percent of the Florida tomato industry.
From the AFL-CIO NOW Blog: “The agreement includes a strict code of conduct, a cooperative complaint resolution system, a health and safety program, a worker-to-worker education process and the penny more a pound for tomatoes picked that workers have long sought.”
The CIW has been successful in the past. Their 2005 “Boot the Bell” campaign resulted in Taco Bell, McDonalds and Burger King pay an increased price for its tomatoes and work directly with the CIW to implement an enforceable code of conduct.
Unsurprisingly, the CIW is gearing up to expand its Campaign for Fair Food to the Publix, Ahold, Kroger and Trader Joe’s supermarket chains, which together have tremendous market power in the produce industry. So far, only the Whole Foods supermarket chain has signed an agreement with the CIW.