[ Emmanuel Ballesteros of the Watsonville Brown Berets, standing on the median of Main Street in Watsonville, California, holds a sign above his head declaring, “Respect the Farmworkers. Boycott Driscoll’s.” April 2, 2016. ]
Over 300 farmworker families in Burlington, Washington are currently waging a historic struggle for a union contract at Sakuma Brothers Farms. They are asking consumers to boycott Driscoll’s berries, which includes strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, and blackberries. Familias Unidas por la Justicia (FUJ), the farmworkers’ independent union, is fighting to end wage theft and poverty wages, inhumane production standards, and retaliation from Sakuma from protected union activity.
Lázaro Matamoros from Oaxaca, México, a farmworker at Sakuma Brothers Farms in Washington state and a rank and file union member of Familias Unidas por la Justicia, held signs on Main Street in Watsonville on Saturday, April 2 to raise awareness in the community regarding “Driscoll’s Exploitation” from “Border to Border.” Matamoros was joined by fellow FUJ activists who are currently on a 28-day tour of the West Coast to energize a major offensive on the boycott of Driscoll’s berries, including a March 31 protest outside the company’s headquarters in Watsonville.
Pedestrians and passing motorists were very receptive to flyers handed out asking people to “Respect the families who grow your food. Don’t buy Driscoll’s.” People went out of their way to speak with demonstrators and learn more about the world famous berry company headquartered less than a mile away.
The following information and call to action comes from the flyer being distributed titled, “Don’t Buy Driscoll’s Berries”
- Sakuma sells most of their berries under Driscoll’s label.
- Driscoll’s is the largest berry distributor in the world and has a history of repressing union organizing.
- Driscoll’s supplies from growers in San Quintín, México where 70,000 workers went on strike, formed a union, and endorsed a boycott of Driscoll’s.
Support the Driscoll’s Boycott
- Call Driscoll’s and let them know you are boycotting their berries: 831 763 3259
- Call Costco and ask them to remove Driscoll’s from their shelves: 425 313 6364
- Call Sakuma and let them know you support the union: 360 757 6611
Previous coverage of the boycott Driscoll’s movement: