The CIW's Campaign for Fair Food has received an incredible amount of national attention in the past few weeks. Last week, Gerardo Reyes was featured in an extensive interview on the NPR program "The Story." This followed two high-profile articles in the Atlantic and on CNN. Here's an excerpt from the CNN article as highlighted on the CIW website:
"... Here's what happens in the supply chain: major corporate buyers such as supermarkets, fast food chains and food service companies regularly purchase a massive amount of produce. Their huge purchases allow these companies to leverage their buying power and demand the lowest possible prices from tomato growers. This, in turn, exerts a powerful downward pressure on wages and working conditions in tomato suppliers' operations...
... It's a dynamic that has existed for decades. But over the past few years, one grassroots organization has started to challenge the big buyers. And they're winning.
The Campaign for Fair Food
To help fight the rampant human trafficking and other injustices in the tomato industry, The Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW) launched the Campaign for Fair Food in 2001. Their goal is to reverse the trend that exploits workers by harnessing the purchasing power of the food industry for the betterment of farmworker wages and working conditions. Over the past decade, they've made major headway..."
The Campaign for Fair Food recently scored agreements with two of the nation's largest tomato growers after a 15 year labor dispute. IATP Food and Community Fellow Sean Sellers has been working closely with the CIW on this effort.
By leveraging its high-volume purchasing power, the U.S. supermarket industry plays an active role in farmworker exploitation. One Penny More, a video created by Sellers and fellow Shalini Kantayya, helped launch the CIW's recent supermarket campaign. You can watch the video and take action for fair food here.