Ethical Charter Implementation Program Launches With Six Buyers and Over 100 Participating Suppliers; Peter O’Driscoll, Laura Himes, and Wyatt Maysey Comment



Ethical Charter Implementation Program Launches With Six Buyers and Over 100 Participating Suppliers; Peter O’Driscoll, Laura Himes, and Wyatt Maysey Comment


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WASHINGTON, DC - The buy- and supply-sides have come together to launch the Ethical Charter Implementation Program (ECIP). Introduced last month, the initiative aims to recognize and strengthen engagement around labor practices in the fresh produce industry without additional audits. Founding buyers Costco, Kroger, Sam’s Club, Target, Walmart, and McDonald’s USA are inviting more than 100 suppliers to use the platform, who are in turn inviting growers into the ECIP LAB online platform.

Peter O'Driscoll, Executive Director, Equitable Food Initiative“EFI is committed to multistakeholder collaboration, so we’re proud to have worked with leaders from across the industry to develop and launch the ECIP LAB platform. Amid a labor shortage, strong management systems and responsible practices are an important recruitment and retention tool,” noted Peter O’Driscoll, Executive Director of Equitable Food Initiative, one of the implementing organizations. “ECIP will be a valuable resource for employers who want to build better workplaces.”

ECIP LAB offers three channels for engagement: learn, assess, and benchmark. Growers can explore the management systems required to implement each principle of the ECIP, rank their own management systems, and track progress over time.

Buyers and suppliers have come together to launch the Ethical Charter Implementation Program, which aims to recognize and strengthen engagement around labor practices in the fresh produce industry without additional audits

According to a press release, ECIP measures an employer’s willingness to engage and improve labor practices rather than testing compliance with a standard.

Laura Himes, Vice President of Global Sourcing, Walmart“At Walmart, we are excited about the potential of this program to scale across the produce value chain without adding additional audits,” said Laura Himes, Vice President of Global Sourcing for Walmart. “What we like about ECIP is that it focuses on continuous improvement while offering many tools and resources for growers to assess their management structures, benchmark their progress and continue to improve over time.”

Suppliers who were involved in the program’s development and testing affirm the value of creating better alignment with the Ethical Charter.

Wyatt Maysey, Director of Sustainability, Taylor Farms“As a supplier, we are excited to support ECIP as a tool that credibly measures employer engagement and encourages continuous improvement, thereby enhancing our relationships with both our customers and our growers,” said Wyatt Maysey, Director of Sustainability at Taylor Farms. “Our hope is that the industry embraces this program as it is an opportunity to help reduce the audit burden already felt by growers.”

If suppliers haven’t yet received a request from a buyer, they can register for the ECIP LAB platform.

For more from the press release, click here.

Cheers to this impactful initiative!

Equitable Food Initiative



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Equitable Food Initiative

The Equitable Food Initiative (EFI) brings together workers, growers and retailers in the effort to produce better fruits…