Today I am donating my post to the fight for Slave Free Tomatoes which is going on right here in the US. Yes tomato pickers being treated like slaves right in Florida. Unacceptable doesn’t even begin to describe this behavior.
After reading the book Tomatoland I was completely horrified to learn the conditions of the tomato pickers in Florida. People being treated like slaves, living in truck trailers, working ungodly hours for barely any money, forced into debt to continue working on the fields – how could this be happening? Most disturbing were the accounts of babies being born to tomato pickers with all sorts of birth defects; missing limbs, organs on the outsides, without any ears, it’s just too terrible to describe. Why was this happening? The tomato pickers are being forced back onto the fields before the pesticides and chemicals have been thoroughly absorbed and therefore they are inhaling all the fumes.
So when the Giving Table emailed me asking if I would like to participate in the campaign for Slave Free tomatoes you can imagine I jumped at the opportunity. Today’s event was “created as a philanthropic response to Recipe for Change, a summer campaign led by International Justice Mission in partnership with The Coalition of Immokalee Workers and the Fair Food Standards Council to raise awareness about the issues of slavery and inequities in U.S. tomato fields and encourage supermarket CEOs to adopt the Fair Food program.”
Without pressures from consumers these policies will not change. I urge you to purchase slave-free tomatoes from Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, locals farms, and your CSA, and fill out this form to send a letter to supermarkets that do not support slave free tomatoes (Giant, Publix, Stop & Shop, Martin’s, Kroger).
What is going on is an outrage and changes need to be made. We can all make these changes possible. With your help we can get these supermarket CEOs to endorse the Fair Food Program, ensuring the tomatoes stocked on their shelves are slave free. The corporations that join the Fair Food Program simply agree to pay 1.5 cents more per pound of harvested tomatoes.
Next time you’re purchasing tomatoes take a minute to think about the people who pick these tomatoes and the lives they are leading.
The tomato recipe I share today makes for a perfect summer appetizer. With fresh local tomatoes in abundance and bursting with flavor just bread them, bake and broil them for a delicious meal starter.
- 1 large tomato
- 1/4 cup breadcrumbs (with Italian seasoning)
- 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1/4 cup gruyere, shredded
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine breadcrumbs, panko, gruyere and garlic in bowl.
- In a separate bowl combine soy sauce, balsamic and 1 teaspoon olive oil.
- Slice tomatoes 1/4-1/2 inch thick.
- Brush soy sauce mix over tomatoes, season with salt and pepper and dip into the bread crumb mix on both sides.
- Grease baking sheet with cooking spray or oil and place tomatoes in single layer. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon olive oil over the tomatoes.
- Bake 15-20 minutes then broil for a few minutes, until lightly browned.
This post has been shared on Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays