Food Justice Certified is a highly meaningful label. It is backed by standards that set a high bar for ensuring fair treatment of workers, fair pricing for farmers, and fair business practices. It assures consumers that they are supporting farmers who are earning a living wage and supporting farms and businesses that treat their workers fairly. The label is verified.
This label can be found on: Meat, fruit, vegetables, legumes, and grains
ORGANIZATION: Agricultural Justice Project
LABEL STANDARDS: www.agriculturaljusticeproject.org/en/learn-more/?pane=standards
What this label means
How meaningful is this label?
The Food Justice Certified label assures consumers that they are supporting farmers who are earning a living wage and supporting farms and businesses that treat their workers fairly.
Fair prices and living wages are clearly defined and required. Unlike some other fair trade labels that only vaguely define “living wages,” Food Justice Certified standards define living wages as the net wage earned during a country’s legal maximum workweek, but not more than 40 hours. This living wage provides for the needs of an average family unit (including nutrition, clothing, health care, education, potable water, child care, transportation, housing, and energy), plus savings (10 percent of income).
Farmworkers also receive workers compensation, disability, and unemployment coverage, social security, sick leave (unpaid at least), and maternity or paternity leave. The standards require rest days (one day of rest for every seven days worked) and ensure that any work in addition to a 48-hour workweek is voluntary (extra overtime pay is not a minimum requirement but a goal of continual improvement).
The label is unique among fair trade and social responsibility labels because standards cover workers along the entire supply chain, from the farm where the food is grown to the companies that process and market the foods, to the retailers that sell it.
The label sets a high bar because it covers all workers, including migrant workers and seasonal workers, on all farms, regardless of size.
Food Justice Certified is one of the few labels that do not allow “split operations” (which produce both certified and noncertified products). A farm, company, or retailer has to be entirely certified before any of its products can bear the label.
The environmental responsibility component of the standards is also strong. At this time, only certified organic farms can carry the Food Justice Certified label. It is one of the only fair trade/social responsibility labels that prohibits the cultivation of genetically engineered (GMO) crops on the farm and the presence of GMOs in the final product bearing the label.