Driscoll’s Commitment to Positive Worker Welfare and Stronger Communities in Baja Mexico

Baja Strike Ends June 2015

In June of 2015, Baja farmworker leaders, the Mexican federal government and growers representing the fruit and vegetable industry reached an agreement to achieve better wages and working conditions for local farmworkers in that region. This agreement ended a strike across all crops, not just berries or only those berries sold under the Driscoll’s brand.

Baja Farmworkers Win Raises, LA Times, June 5th 2015

Transparency and Driscoll’s Worker Welfare Commitment

Driscoll’s takes it very seriously with any concerns on how our independent growers treat their farmworkers. Currently there is much misinformation and inaccurate statements being made about our brand and our independent growers. The information that is being shared is false and we will continue to outreach to groups who are sharing the material to educate them on the accuracy and depth of our commitment to Global Worker Welfare. Groups that knowingly share incorrect information distract from the goal of improving conditions for all farm workers.

We have invited both Gloria Gracida Martinez and Al Rojas, spokespeople for Alianza de Organizaciones por la Justicia Social (Alianza) along with their supporters, to meet and discuss any concerns. They have consistently declined our invitation which continues to remain open on our end.

Driscoll’s Independent Growers in Baja

BerryMex, an independent grower of Driscoll’s, took an active role in working with their harvesters, well before the Baja negotiations and before the final strike agreement was reached. They experienced strong support from their workforce despite protests from outside organizers and a significant work stoppage.As one of Driscoll’s strongest partners, BerryMex has consistently served as a leader throughout this process and within the larger agriculture community by increasing wages and earning potential for their workers and going beyond compensation to also focus on advancing working conditions. BerryMex is proud to be certified with the Fair Trade USA™ program on every ranch, offer its workers some of the highest wages in all of Mexico, provide union representation throughout its operations and offer a private healthcare clinic to all of their employees. We truly believe that BerryMex is paving the way for the standard that all growers should be striving for throughout Mexico.

Baja Labor, LA Times, May 21, 2015
BerryMex Welcomes Agreements Reached in San Quintin Valley

Driscoll’s Industry Leadership Supporting Worker Welfare

As an effort to further reinforce the fruit and vegetable industry’s long-term commitment to socially responsible business practices in Mexico, the formation of the International Produce Alliance to Promote a Socially Responsible Industry (AHIFORES) was established. The alliance represents the vast majority of Mexico’s produce, covering exports such as asparagus, avocados, berries, citrus, grapes, mangos, papayas and tomatoes, among others. Driscoll's general manager of Mexico operations was elected president of the organization and will focus on building partnerships between independent growers and the Mexican government using Driscoll’s approach as the model.

Driscoll’s Executive To Lead Produce Industry Change, LA Times, 2015

In addition, Driscoll’s has demonstrated leadership in these key initiatives:

Driscoll’s Fair Trade Program
Industry Joint Committee on Responsible Labor Practices is Established

Driscoll’s Calls For Open Dialogue

Driscoll’s will support and respect those who may peacefully continue bringing awareness to improving working conditions in San Quintín and Mexico. We urge government officials as well as advocacy groups to maintain a productive dialogue, and to work together to resolve differences in a peaceful manner through an honest and open process.

We in no way condone actions of violence or intimidation. We must all work together to create a future for vibrant communities for everyone involved in growing the food we eat. We are hopeful that our efforts will allow us to remain humble and uphold our Mission to continually delight our berry consumers by better aligning with our growers and customers.

For media inquiries, please contact: press@driscolls.com