Will buyers paying a penny a pound more for tomatoes help farm workers ?

An article in ozy.com (January 16,2014) titled “A Penny a Pound and so much more”, describes the push by the Coalition of Immokalee Workers to get buyers like Taco Bell, Subway, McDonalds, WalMart and Whole Foods to pay a penny a pound more for their tomatoes. The goal is to get these funds back to farm labor, with the impact being to double their wages. With retailers accepting this price increase, and the Florida Tomato Growers Exchange now permitting these funds to go to farm labor, the question is whether this approach can be expanded to other products. Can textile manufacturers be pressured to ensure fair labor cost payments to employees across the world ? Should the consumer bear the higher product cost or should this come from distributor margins ? Should one expect base labor costs paid to farm labor to decrease to compensate for these flows ?

About aviyer2010

This entry was posted in Operations Management, Supply Chain Issues and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Will buyers paying a penny a pound more for tomatoes help farm workers ?

  1. Doesn’t this idea violate all sorts of basic economics? If we want to raise it 1 cent, why not 5 cents? How sensitive is demand to the price? Considering the plethora of potential substitutes, demand is probably very price sensitive. To me, this amounts to either a tax on tomatoes or collusion if EVERY tomato farmer agrees to participate.

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