The U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of International Labor Affairs (ILAB) today announced a cooperative agreement of $4.87 million to the Fair Labor Association (FLA) to pilot test the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s "Guidelines for Eliminating Child and Forced Labor in Agricultural Supply Chains" over the next 28 months. The FLA will partner with three companies affiliated with the FLA – Nestlé, Olam-Prodiga and Balsu – in applying the guidelines to their hazelnut supply chain in Turkey.
According to the International Labor Organization (ILO), an estimated 215 million children are involved in child labor worldwide, and an estimated six million children are forced to work around the world. In December, the U.S. Department of Labor launched a free toolkit to help companies develop programs to combat forced and child labor in their supply chains.
FLA maps complete cocoa sourcing process in Ivory Coast for the first time
FLA joins representatives from other nonprofit organizations, trade unions, the apparel industry and others in calling for an end to forced child labor in Uzbekistan. Read more from the Cotton Campaign.
From Stop Child Labor: "Among a large number of multinationals involved [in the Turkish hazelnut sector], Nestlé has thus far been the only company to make a public assessment of the situation by collaborating with the Fair Labor Association (FLA). The FLA evaluated labor and human rights issues in the hazelnut supply chain in Turkey in August 2011.
Cocoa, hazelnut projects prepare Nestlé to join the FLA as a Participating Company
There are some interesting new postings on the FLA web site related to the FLA’s Syngenta project. As FLA groupies know, that project relates to the FLA’s unique application of its methodologies used in the apparel industry to agriculture. Several years ago the FLA was asked to address the problem of the use of child labor in the Indian seed supply chain. The FLA commissioned two independent studies to assess the risks and then, based on the result of these studies , developed a new approach to internal and external monitoring of labor standards.
On April 12, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Foreign Agricultural Service announced the opening of the public comment period on recommendations – made by the Consultative Group to Eliminate the Use of Child Labor and Forced Labor in Imported Agricultural Products – for voluntary private-sector monitoring and verification of child labor and forced labor in supply chains.