Have you ever wanted the perfect one-pager on the Fair Food Program — the document you could hand your local grocery store manager, your campus foodservice provider, your community or church social justice group, or just a friend you’re trying to bring up to speed on the Fair Food movement – but didn’t know where to find it? Well, look no further… that one-pager is here.
The groundbreaking work of the FFP was recently profiled in the UN Global Compact’s new index, Supply Chain Sustainability: Practices & Resources. The site was built with the express purpose of highlighting best practices in social responsibility from around the world as a service to companies looking to address human rights issues in their supply chains. In the words of the UN Global Compact mission page:
In recent years, there has been a proliferation of initiatives, codes, standards, resources and tools designed to help business to develop more sustainable supply chain management strategies and practices. While this has meant that business has more choice of resources to use in helping them to improve the sustainability of their supply chains, it has also raised the barrier of entry in terms of the time and effort needed to research and understand these various resources.
The purpose of this website, produced by the United Nations Global Compact Office in collaboration with CSR Europe, is to make it easier for practitioners to search and find relevant information to assist them in the process of embedding sustainability issues – human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption – into supply chains.
As news of the past year has made abundantly clear, the need for real, enforceable human rights protections in global supply chains – from garments to cellphones to Florida tomatoes — is only growing. The Fair Food Program provides a unique model of worker-centered social responsibility that stands head and shoulders above the vast majority of corporate-controlled, audit-based programs. Here’s a short excerpt from the write-up on the Fair Food Program:
The Fair Food Program (FFP) is designed to alter the American agricultural dynamic that has historically relied upon a powerless and compliant work force. Through a unique collaboration among workers, growers and retailers, the FFP is eliminating forced labor and other human rights abuses, and demonstrating that an entire industry, from top to bottom, can benefit from a system that demands verifiable accountability and respects the rights and concerns of all of its participants.
The FFP is in effect throughout Florida, covering about 30 growers and 30,000 workers. It requires growers to comply with its Code of Conduct, and participating retailers to contribute to the costs of that compliance. The Code establishes 1) zero tolerance for forced labor, child labor, violence and serious sexual harassment, 2) a bonus for workers, 3) health and safety committees, 4) on-the-clock worker-to-worker education, and 5) numerous other protections (such as shade) that exceed the requirements of U.S. law. Retailers support Code compliance by paying a price premium and purchasing only from growers in good standing.
The FFP achieves compliance through a multi-faceted enforcement scheme, including worker education, a 24-hour complaint line and resolution process, audits, and market consequences for noncompliance.
Definitely check out the write-up in its entirety and share the link so that others can learn about this uniquely effective program.
The UN Global Compact index is also a timely reminder of the growing awareness of the Fair Food Program in global circles. As we write, the CIW is responding to invitations to speak throughout Europe, spreading the word in person. Today, the CIW and Fair Food Standards Council will address over 1,700 delegates at the U.N. Forum on Business and Human Rights in Geneva — to be followed on December 4th by a presentation from CIW’s Laura Germino at the Trust Women Conference in London on the prevention of modern-day slavery. Make sure to stay tuned for reports from across the pond in the coming days!