For Immediate Release
OCA and Teamsters: "Whole Foods, Be Fair to Beef Workers!"
Groups Announce October 4 & 5 Actions at Whole Foods
WASHINGTON - The Organic Consumers Association and the Teamsters Union today called
on Whole Foods Market to use its influence to put an end to labor
rights violations at three Beef Northwest feedlots in Oregon and to
respect the United Farm Workers' (UFW) union efforts.
Beef Northwest finishes cattle for the Country Natural Beef label and
has been accused of chronic labor abuses and discrimination of workers'
rights by its employees. The United Farm Workers were approached by
Beef Northwest workers in the fall of 2006 seeking representation.
Whole Foods is the nation's largest distributor of Country Natural Beef
and an industry leader in promoting animal welfare standards. Whole
Foods, however, has failed to demand equal protection for the farm
workers who produce its Country Natural Beef.
"Whole Foods has led the industry in implementing humane standards for
meat, dairy, and seafood production, yet has lagged behind protecting
domestic farm workers and other agriculture workers," said Organic
Consumers Association Executive Director Ronnie Cummins. "OCA believes
that workers' rights, the freedom to form a union and fair trade
principles are fundamental ingredients for a food and farming system
that is organic and just."
"Workers' rights are just as important as eliminating pesticides on
food and stopping animal abuse," said Jim Hoffa, Teamsters General
President. "It's time that Whole Foods truly starts living up to its
Organic Consumers Association, the Teamsters Union and the United Farm
Workers will be mobilizing members and supporters the weekend of
October 4-5 to send a message to Whole Foods executives: No Sweatshop
Beef! In a ground-breaking partnership, labor unions, farm workers and
concerned consumers will be banding together to educate Whole Foods'
customers and employees.Use this paragraph to dig a bit deeper. Tell
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Alert Sent to 200,000 Organic Consumers --
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The Organic Consumers Association has been organizing consumers around demands for healthy, local, organic and fair trade products for 10 years. OCA members confront the worst practices of industrial agriculture, including labor rights violations, with boycotts, educational campaigns, direct action and legislative advocacy.