WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dole Food Company, Inc. announced today that its Costa Rican subsidiary Standard Fruit Company of Costa Rica S.A. received the prestigious “Social Responsibility in Action” award and was also recognized as a “Top Winner” in the Community category by the Costa Rican American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham).
In its ninth edition, more than 30 projects from Costa Rican companies were nominated for recognition by AmCham.
Dole’s entry into the award competition focused on its Fair Trade initiative, which has been successfully implemented in five Employee Associations over the past three years, and includes more than 3200 employees from about 54 communities. For every kilo of pineapple and bananas sold in the United States these associations receive an important “fair trade premium” contribution to be used for social development projects in the communities.
“Initiatives like ours and other Fair Trade initiatives in Costa Rica are successful because of a commitment and partnering throughout the entire supply chain,” stated Xavier Roussel, Dole’s Vice President of Marketing and Sustainability. “Local communities would not receive these benefits without retailers also being willing to support these Fair Trade initiatives by broadening their product offerings to consumers,” he added.
Luis Gonzalez Oconitrillo, President of the Fair Trade association at the Standard Fruit owned farm La Virgen Farm echoed praise for the Company’s efforts, saying “Thanks to these beneficial Fair Trade initiatives we have achieved significant contributions for our workers and communities.”
In addition to the “Social Responsibility in Action” award, Standard Fruit also was bestowed the Top Winner award in the “Community” category for its Fair Trade certified farms.
“We are honored to have received this recognition from AmCham,” stated Reinieri Núñez, Vice President Pineapple Operations, Dole Tropical Products Latin America Ltd. “This is truly the result of the hard work by our team leading this project and the successful management carried out by our employees, who make up the Fair Trade committees in the farms, and who have demonstrated great ability and commitment.”
Raúl Martínez, General Manager Costa Rica Banana Division, Standard Fruit Company de Costa Rica S.A., added, “Worker participation throughout the organization is of critical importance for such a successful initiative as this, both in the present and its projection for the future.”
The awards ceremony—which included categories like public-private partnerships, environment, employees and the community—was held on Friday, October 23. Mr. Stafford Fitzgerald Haney, U.S. Ambassador to Costa Rica, participated as a special guest in the ceremony.
About Dole Food Company, Inc.
Dole Food Company, Inc., is one of the world’s largest producers and marketers of high-quality fresh fruit and fresh vegetables. Dole is an industry leader in many of the products it sells, as well as in nutrition education and research. For more information, please visit www.dole.com.