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Why Mexico’s Farmworkers Who Harvest Our Food Are on Strike


#1

Why Mexico’s Farmworkers Who Harvest Our Food Are on Strike

Sonali Kolhatkar

The green Driscoll’s label on the organic berries that I buy each week are a comforting symbol of a family-owned company that got its start in California. Sometimes the berries are marked “Product of USA,” but more often than not, they are labeled as originating in Mexico. That is because Reiter Affiliated Cos., which sells berries through its affiliate BerryMex under the Driscoll’s label, grows much of its produce in Mexico.


#2

It's about time USA consumers have their faces rubbed in the deplorable, I humane world that Latino harvesters


#3

A new Cesar Chavez should now emerge and lead. I remember boycotting grapes and I really like grapes.


#4

Relax, fellow Americans. We have steadily been increasing the number of poor Americans to replace Mexican farm workers in the US. We already have a significant replacement workforce, desperate for any job at any wage, created after the US already shipped out a massive number of our manufacturing jobs. And yes, many of these are experienced in field work and livestock, and an unknown number of poor are currently working farms for room and board alone.


#5

Sonali, please check your facts before implicating our company, Del Cabo in the strike. We have made it our mission for the past 30 years to develop a business that considers people before profits. Your best choice if you want to stand with the farmworkers is to seek out companies that are working to make a difference. Del Cabo Organic Growers have been successfully doing that with our Mexican partners for over 30 years.

The Del Cabo Mexico farmers own their own farms averaging ½ to 5 acres, and either work their farms themselves or hire labor from the local community. Del Cabo's organic growers maintain a longstanding commitment to paying fair wages, providing social services and growing high value crops in which the farming communities share in the financial rewards.

Del Cabo in Mexico complies with all Mexican labor laws. In addition, most of the produce from the grower communities and farmer-owned companies is Fairtrade Certified - an independent social accountability certification. Del Cabo farmworkers are were not and are not striking and their crops throughout Baja are being harvested as usual. We stand by our name and our work.

Del Cabo supports any and all change that improves the incomes and well-being of the most vulnerable. We believe there is no greater injustice than working all day and not being able to feed your family.


#6

It is more than trendy to know where food comes from. It is the only way to know what is in the food, what the food even is in the case of GMO nonsense, what has happened to the soil and landscape, how the workers live, what has been the impact of transport and storage, and what sort of financial shell games have been levied to bind the hands of farmers and owners of farms, or which politicians the beneficiaries of those shell games will pay off to do what.

Whatever system ever existed to allow Americans to trust any little part of that to chance has been usurped. It's time to know where the T-shirts come from, too. Any money that goes into that global system is almost certain to go to paying the wrong person to do the wrong things.

I can't always buy clean. I can't always not buy, and I know others can't, either. I make 1-time purchases when I can, and I compromise when I have to--about 30% of what I had to last year, though that could change fast in an emergency. This isn't a boycott: I am not coming back. Here's to fresh eggs, canning jars, and the kids down the street who want to see how stuff grows.