People First Webinar

‘People First’ Spotlight On Social Responsibility Presented By The Packer And Equitable Food Initiative

Lenexa, Kan., (Feb. 18, 2021) – The importance of social responsibility and fresh produce companies’ efforts to achieve it are firmly planted in the spotlight, as the COVID-19 pandemic has reinforced that the food industry is vital, and a healthy workforce is essential for a healthy business. To bring this topic to the forefront with in-depth and relevant content, The Packer has partnered with Equitable Food Initiative (EFI) to present People First: A Spotlight on Social Responsibility, Feb. 22 to March 16, 2021.

Headlining the free program is a four-part webinar series from EFI that will host change makers in the field and cover the following topics:

  • February 23: Intro to the Ethical Charter — Peter O’Driscoll, EFI; Anabella de Freeman, Walmart; Ed Treacy, Produce Marketing Association
  • March 2: Myths & Realities of Social Compliance — Karla Cook, EFI; and Amalia Lommel, GoodFarms
  • March 9: Integrating Worker Voice — Gretta Siebentritt, EFI; Pamela Aceves, NatureSweet
  • March 16: Responsible Recruitment — Kenton Harmer, EFI; Norma Encinas, CIERTO

“The fresh produce industry has taken major steps on food safety and sustainability, but now is the time to take the same leadership role to elevate social responsibility,” said Peter O’Driscoll, executive director of EFI. “Bringing the industry to the forefront of this movement is essential, as consumers demand it and retail buyers require it. More importantly, it is the right thing to do, as an engaged and motivated workforce makes companies healthier and more productive. We are proud to partner with The Packer and commend them for focusing on stories of social responsibility and the direction and actionable steps necessary to create long-lasting organizational change.”

To complement the webinar series, additional social responsibility content – from podcast and video interviews to a special insert in the March 1 issue of The Packer newspaper – will be featured and promoted via a dedicated People First portal on where all program components will be available. These activities will deliver concentrated content to a targeted audience and offer dozens of chances for brands throughout the fresh produce supply chain to align with key thought leaders and change makers in social responsibility.

“Farm Journal and The Packer follow a ‘people first’ philosophy and invest heavily in employee well-being, and we believe it’s important to partner with like-minded organizations to encourage others to put people first as well,” said Matt Morgan, Farm Journal’s executive vice president, produce. “Plus, People First will be a strong lead-in to National Farmworker Awareness Week in late March, which will further showcase the people behind fresh produce.”

To learn more about the program, including webinar series details and register for free, go to

About Farm Journal
Farm Journal is the nation’s leading business information and media company serving the agricultural market. Started 144 years ago with the preeminent Farm Journal magazine, the company serves the row crop, livestock, produce and retail sectors through branded websites, eNewsletters and phone apps; business magazines; live events including conferences, seminars and tradeshows; nationally broadcasted television and radio programs; a robust mobile-text-marketing business; and an array of data-driven, paid information products. Farm Journal also is the majority shareholder of the online equipment marketplace, Machinery Pete LLC. In 2010, the company established the non-profit, public charity, Farm Journal Foundation, dedicated to sustaining agriculture’s ability to meet the vital needs of a growing population through education and empowerment.

About Equitable Food Initiative (EFI)
Equitable Food Initiative is a nonprofit certification and skill-building organization that seeks to increase transparency in the food supply chain and improve the lives of farmworkers through a team-based approach to training and continuous improvement practices. EFI brings together growers, farmworkers, retailers and consumers to solve the most pressing issues facing the fresh produce industry. Its unparalleled approach sets standards for labor practices, food safety and pest management while engaging workers at all levels on the farm to produce Responsibly Grown, Farmworker Assured® fruits and vegetables. For more information about Equitable Food Initiative, visit

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