Dole Food Company's Costa Rican subsidiary Standard Fruit Company has received the Social Responsibility in Action award, and has also been recognised 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 3,200 employees from about 54 communities. For every kilo of pineapple and bananas sold in the US 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 honoured to have received this recognition from AmCham,” stated Reinieri Núñez, vice-president pineapple operations, Dole Tropical Products Latin America. “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.”