Daily News Archive
FLOC’s Mt. Olive Pickle Company Boycott
(Beyond Pesticides, December 5, 2003) According to the Farm Labor Organizing Committee (FLOC), the North Carolina farmworkers that pick cucumbers for the Mt. Olive Pickle Company labor under sweatshop conditions. FLOC states that a harvester of the cucumbers that become Mt. Olive Pickles gets roughly 65 cents per 33 pound bucket (averaging 6 buckets an hour). The workers usually sleep in housing packed with many more workers than humanely fit, and the workplace seldom has a toilet close or clean enough to use or soap for washing hands. When the farmworkers are injured or sick, they rarely find a first aid kit or someone to take you to the doctor.
Although the company makes millions each year from selling its pickles, Mt. Olive refuses to give the workers who harvest its pickles a voice in contract negotiations. Mt. Olive claims that because the farm owners technically employ the workers, it is up to the farm owners to increase wages and improve working conditions. However, the company is barely paying the farmers enough for their cucumbers to get by. Only an agreement between the company, the farmers, and farmworkers will create a process by which problems can be resolved openly and workers can get their fair share without overburdening already struggling farmers.
Take Action: The following are actions that FLOC recommends to get the farmworkers the rights that they deserve:
The Mt. Olive Pickle Company Boycott is being organized by FLOC, 1221 Broadway, Toledo, OH 43609, 419-243-3456. For more information on the boycott, see www.floc.com.