From Oxfam: Does the food you buy still contain human suffering?

he Behind the Barcodes campaign works to ensure supermarkets address human rights issues in their supply chain. Photo: Pixabay

he Behind the Barcodes campaign works to ensure supermarkets address human rights issues in their supply chain. Photo: Pixabay

Posted by Sarah Zoen. Co-written with Art Prapha, senior campaigns and advocacy advisor at Oxfam America. 

More than 200,000 consumers last year put top US supermarkets on notice to change their ways. Our updated scorecard reveals which companies are listening—and one healthy foods giant who still isn’t.

Here’s the truth—we didn’t know what to expect when Oxfam launched a campaign last year to spotlight the unjust treatment facing people whose hard work goes into the food on sale at US grocery stores. Would consumers care? Would supermarkets respond?

Questions aside, we did know one thing: human suffering should never be an ingredient in the food we buy. By examining the policies and practices of some of the world’s biggest supermarkets, it became clear that not one company was doing enough to protect their workers or treat women fairly, among other important concerns.

That’s why we asked you to challenge supermarket executives to change their ways and put people first. The response was tremendous—more than 200,000 consumers demanded an end to the human rights abuses taking place across their global supply chains.

So did the supermarkets listen? Some have—but many have not. Continue reading