In 2009, Chiquita joined two organizations that support collaboration on sustainability and other global issues. The World Banana Forum (WBF) was launched to bring together a broad base of stakeholders concerned with banana production and trade. Chiquita also joined the Global Social Compliance Programme (GSCP), which aims to develop a shared approach to social and environmental standards in the global supply chain.

The World Banana Forum promotes the worldwide adoption of sustainable practices for banana production and trade and has created a meeting place for all stakeholders in the production and trade of bananas. The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations provides the Secretariat, which supports and facilitates WBF activities.

The World Banana Forum plays a valuable role enabling many interested parties – banana producers, retailers, governments, research institutions and civil society organizations – to come together in a spirit of collaboration, not just to engage in dialogue, but primarily with the aim to bring about improvements in the social and environmental impact of the sector that individual organizations cannot achieve on their own.

Chiquita plays an active role in World Banana Forum, serving on:

  • WBF Steering Committee
  • Coordinating team of the Working Group on Sustainable Banana Production and Trade
  • Earlier, the ad hoc preparatory committee prior to the first WBF conference

The World Banana Forum is still a new multi-stakeholder platform, with great potential.

The Global Social Compliance Programme (GSCP) was founded by leading retailers in 2006 to harmonize existing efforts and develop a shared and sustainable approach for continuous improvement of social and environmental conditions in global supply chains.

GSCP’s membership includes leading buying companies (retailers, brands, brokers, etc.) in many sectors, and has a strong Advisory Board composed of experts from civil society organizations, including representatives of trade unions, human rights, non-governmental organizations and academia. The GSCP is therefore uniquely positioned to exercise positive influence in several ways:

  • Defining and promoting best social and environmental practice through its reference tools and models
  • Promoting the harmonization of social and environmental standards
  • Encouraging convergence and collaboration of social and environmental schemes
  • Ensuring that civil society organizations play an influential role in shaping the GSCP’s work
  • Improving social and environmental conditions in global supply chains.

Chiquita serves as a member of the GSCP’s Executive Board, and has played an active role in the GSCP’s Expert Working Groups.

Our point of view:

The GSCP’s efforts to develop common standards and approaches are critically important for global companies and communities. We need to arrive at a common definition of good social and environmental practice in global supply chains. Much well-intentioned effort has gone into separate initiatives, which if brought together, will become a major factor in supporting human rights and environmental responsibility across the globe.

Chiquita highly values the World Banana Forum and the Global Social Compliance Programme and is pleased to contribute to their work. Our years of experience with Rainforest Alliance and SA8000 certifications, our role on the advisory board of Social Accountability International and our International Framework Agreement with global and regional trade union bodies enable us to contribute to the development of these still-young organizations.