We are sending Michael J. Mendes, the CEO of Diamond Foods, a petition asking him to improve snack food brand Emerald Nuts’ level of transparency and join the fight against child labour.
As a consumer, we have a right to know where the food we eat comes from and that it is free of the involvement of child and forced labour. We are concerned that many of the regions in which Diamond Foods operates are well known risk areas for forced and child labour.
It’s the warm tropical countries in Africa and Asia which are home to the largest producers of cashew nuts. These nuts then travel around the world to be packaged and served to us by Emerald Nuts as the energy-giving cure to our dreaded afternoon slumps – at least that’s what Emerald nuts claims.
But let’s take a step back. Not much is said about how these and other nuts are produced and precisely where they are sourced. Diamond Foods, the proud owner of Emerald Nuts, has neglected to provide this information.
Diamond Foods states in its 2010 annual report that it sources its cashew nuts from India, Africa, Brazil and Southeast Asia. It’s no secret that India is rife with child labour practices. According to research conducted by ChildRight and the U.S. Department of Labour (DOL), an estimated 20,000 children are engaged in cashew nut processing in India alone. And this is just one of the many regions where cashews are produced. So, where does Diamond Foods get its cashews in India?
"The Rehab Archipelago: Forced Labor and Other Abuses in Drug Detention Centers in Southern Vietnam", a new report by Human Rights Watch, released this month, suggests child and forced labour abuses exist within the cashew nut industry in Vietnam. This further emphasises the pressing need for Diamond Foods to declare the precise measures they are taking to ensure their cashews sourced from Southeast Asia are not from these controversial areas.
Join the Diamond Foods and Emerald Nuts wake-up call! We need your help! Sign the petition today to help improve Diamond Foods’ transparency and urge them to join the fight against child labour.
Read more at www.fairfood.org/wakeup.