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Trader Joe's protest called off; pressure on Publix instead

Trader Joe's protest called off; pressure on Publix instead

By Julie Salomone. CREATED Feb 10, 2012

NAPLES- Nearly a dozen farm workers made the trip from Immokalee on Friday to Naples.
Their destination was a Publix in Naples.

The Coalition of Immokalee farm workers is once again pushing Publix to sign a fair food agreement.
On Friday, they spoke with managers outside the Publix on Immokalee Road and US 41.

They're asking the grocery store chain to pay just a penny more per pound of tomatoes. It's something they say would help boost wages and working conditions. It's a message Publix managers say they'll take to the higher ups.

The group had originally planned on visiting Trader Joe's to protest the company's
grand opening.

The group had originally planned on visiting Trader Joe's to protest the company's grand opening, but it was called. Trader Joe's announced on Thursday it had signed a fair food agreement. The company saying in a statement they signing promotes responsibility in the US produce industry and that small price will help improve wages.

So will anything change when it comes to Publix? Publix saying in a statement that this is a labor dispute and they simply aren't involved. There's more than 35,000 items in its stores so there's potential for countless ongoing disputes between suppliers and their employees.

Those farm workers are planning another protest on Sunday outside the Publix on US 41 and Vanderbilt Beach Road at 2pm.

Julie Salomone
Fox 4
jsalomone@fox4now.com