The Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) has agreed to suspend banana-producer Fyffes’ membership with the group, following a recommendation to the board by the subcommittee.
The ETI received a complaint about Fyffes in April 2016, regarding human-rights abuses in a Honduran melon plantation. The complaint was from the International Union of Food Workers (IUF) and Banana Link, an NGO, both of which are members of the ETI.
Following the suspension announcement, the executive director of ETI, Peter McAllister, said, “Workers should be able to enjoy their right to be represented by those they choose, and so engage with management.”
McAllister stated that this issue has been at the heart of the dispute between the IUF, Banana Link and Fyffes.
“Fyffes' suspension from ETI, whilst not a decision that has been taken lightly, offers a focused and time-bound opening to grasp the opportunity that such engagement represents.”
As recommended by the subcommittee of the board, Fyffes will be required to work with the IUF to reach a “mutually agreeable framework for engagement” within a period of 90 days. Failure to do so within the time parameters will result in expulsion from the ETI's membership.
The suspension is in effect as of the date of the ETI board meeting, which took place on 4 May.
© 2017 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Aidan O'Sullivan. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.