Product of Mexico

Picture Source: Los Angeles Times

Last week, the Los Angeles Times posted a four part series titled “Products of Mexico.” Traveling across nine Mexican states, reporter Richard Marosi and photojournalist Don Bartletti observed and interviewed workers from various mega-farms.

They found that many farm laborers are trapped until the season harvest ends in rat-infested camps without beds or clean water. Many bathe in irrigation canals outside camps because water often runs out in the camp facilities.

The camp bosses illegally withhold their daily/weekly wages to prevent any of them from escaping. Some try but are caught and are forcefully brought back.

Farm workers become ill due to breathing in and interacting with harsh pesticides used to treat the produce causing them to uncontrollably cough and break out with rashes. The people who are too ill to work are put on a no-pay list and are not fed.

Product prices in the camps grocery stores are so high many of the farm workers end up in deep debt, some just days after arriving. All the products sold in the small grocery stores in the camps are not priced making it troublesome for the workers, 2 eggs can range from $1 to $2. Laborers who cannot read nor do math are unknowingly charged more for products.

With false promises, these farm workers are brought to the mega-farms and remain there for months working 6 days a week and earn up to $8 to $12 a day.


Video Source: Los Angeles Times

Why do we value the produce more than the human caring for it?

It should be our social responsibility to change how this system has oppressed the farm workers, not only in Mexico, but throughout the world. Our commodity should not come at the expense of someone else’s life.

If you buy tomatoes, chili peppers, cucumbers or any product with the “Product of Mexico” sticker than you are a part of this. We must demand for big corporations to enforce or change their policies and help improve the lives the indigenous farm workers.

Los Angeles Times- Product of Mexico

Picture Source: Los Angeles Times

Part 1: Farm exports to the U.S. from Mexico have tripled to $7.6 billion in the last decade, enriching agribusinesses, distributors and retailers. But for thousands of farm laborers south of the border, the boom is a story of exploitation and extreme hardship.

Part 2: A raid exposes brutal conditions at Bioparques, one of Mexico’s biggest tomato exporters, which was a Wal-Mart supplier. But the effort to hold the grower accountable is looking more like a tale of impunity.

Part 3: The company store is supposed to be a lifeline for migrant farm laborers. But inflated prices drive people deep into debt. Many go home penniless, obliged to work off their debts at the next harvest.

Part 4: About 100,000 children under 14 pick crops for pay at small- and mid-size farms across Mexico, where child labor is illegal. Some of the produce they harvest reaches American consumers, helping to power an export boom.

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Dolphin Blue Sponsors the First Ever ‘Run for Environment’

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Despite the cold, windy and rainy weather, Dolphin Blue’s staff members Courtney, Mike and Miguel along with our CEO Tom Kemper arrived early on Saturday morning for the very first Green Source DFW Run for the Environment at Cedar Hill State Park, sponsored by Dolphin Blue, to set up our booth that featured several of our Pet Supplies, Kids Toys, Planners & CalendarsPersonal Care Products and Cleaning Supplies. We also featured our new line of dog toys, Zogoflex: Chew, Play and Treat toys.

Our booth all set up and ready for the run to start!

Our booth all set up and ready for the run to start!

While Courtney and Mike stayed behind to mingle with the people curiously coming to our booth, Miguel ventured off to take these amazing pictures of the participants, the live band and the scenery.

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There were plenty of photo-ops to be captured at the Run for the Environment including runners, live band, children and dogs.

Courtney felt all the good energy at the run, here is what she had to say about her Run for the Environment experience.

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Courtney smiling brightly at the camera.

“There was a good energy there and definitely excitement when the race began. Everyone I spoke to was passionate about living green in some way or another.

Dolphin Blue was able to educate some people on why our products are so important, others already knew what we did and expressed their adulation.

There were a lot of great aspects that you don’t see at other runs, such as organic vendors, compost bins for all the post-race bananas and portable solar panels providing all of the power needed.”

Wildtree giving out samples.

Wildtree giving out samples.

Sponsors, such as Wildtree, gave samples of their oils and spices to those who visited their tent while Kroger gave out fruits, drinks and snack bars.

Dolphin Blue gave out organic Body Wash and Body Lotion samples to everyone who wandered to our booth and Dolphin Plush Dog Toys to the energetic pups who were at the event.

Dan Lepinski’s solar shuttle provided power for the live band and the race timers.

Preservation Tree and Texas Trees Foundation donated chinquapin oaks, which were included in the goodie bags given out to all the participants.

It was good to see a lot of people who care about our planet show up on such a gloomy day for a good cause. Everyone from Dolphin Blue had a great time at the run and we hope to see you all at the next Run for the Environment.

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Mike and Courtney at the Dolphin Blue booth

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Hank the Cowdog happily trotting back with his Frisbee at the Run for the Environment.

A very dog friendly event!

A very dog friendly event!

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Announcing the winners of the run.

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