In Florida and across the country, men, women, and children are enslaved, abused, and exploited in order to pick tomatoes for America's supermarkets and restaurants. For over a decade, Coalition of Immokalee Workers has investigated and fought modern-day slavery in the tomato industry with their Campaign for Fair Food. The campaign has reached a critical tipping point with the four largest fast-food companies (McDonalds, Yum Brands, Burger King, and Subway) and the three largest foodservice providers (Compass Group, Aramark, and Sodexo) having signed Fair Food agreements with the CIW. Public pressure and momentum on the side of the CIW has also resulted in several of Florida's largest growers coming to the table to participate in the Campaign for Fair Food.
Now, the focus falls squarely on the $550 billion supermarket industry. While grocery stores like Whole Foods have agreed to stand against slavery in agriculture, Ahold USA and brands Giant and Stop & Shop have refused to sign. It's time for Ahold USA to support fair food and work with suppliers to ensure justice for farm workers and an end to slavery in the tomato industry.