Under the program area of Food Sovereignty, C2C currently has three project:
- Farmworker Rights
- Transforming the Food System
Each project combines community education, action, and reflection as we strive for Food Sovereignty: the right of peoples to healthy and culturally appropriate food produced through ecologically sound and sustainable methods, and their right to define their own food and agriculture systems.
For over 3 years, Community to Community farmworker leaders worked with grassroots food sovereignty organizations across the nation to develop a joint position of what food sovereignty is in the United States. Through many meetings and discussions, we discovered that food justice was not enough. We found that in other countries, peasant movements are talking about food sovereignty. The notion of being a sovereign human being — with the most basic needs that we have as humans — means having control of the food that we eat. This includes knowing where the food comes from, what it is, and whenever possible, having access to land to create our own food sources.
In efforts to create solidarity among grassroots organizations in defining food sovereignty in the United States, C2C spent 3 days at the 2010 US Social Forum developing the Statement from the People’s Movement Assembly on Food Sovereignty. This statement comes from frontline communities struggling to survive in urban and rural areas and lays the ground work for our food sovereignty programs.
Familias Unidas por La Justicia
Community to Community supports and stands in solidarity with Familias Unidas por La Justicia (FUJ), Washington state's only independent farmworker union. FUJ is comprised of migrant workers that harvest the crops at Sakuma Brothers Farms each year. The union is over 450 members strong and Familias Unidas por la Justicia has called for the boycott of all Sakuma Brothers Farms products until Sakuma Brothers recognizes farmworkers’ rights to a living wage, proper treatment by management, and a legally binding labor contract.
Sakuma Brothers Farms is the largest industrial berry farm in Western Washington. This is in addition to the expansion of Norcal Nursery, located in Red Bluff, California. Sakuma Brothers Farms has been selling their berries internationally through the Driscoll’s label for over 20 years. Farmworkers have continually experienced hostile work environments, discrimination, poor housing conditions, and wage theft at Sakuma Brothers Farms in Washington and in California. Because farmworkers are not afforded the protections of many federal and state employment laws, Sakuma Brothers Farms regularly exploits not only farmworkers and their families by violating their human, civil, and labor rights.
Community to Community applauds the leadership and mobilization of Familias Unidas por la Justicia against systematic wage theft and the mistreatment of migrant farmworkers and for their struggle for dignity. In standing with Familias Unidas por la Justicia and supporting this farmworker movement, Community to Community is moving forward with a dynamic change in the local food system.
C2C supports FUJ through
- Boycott Coorindation
- Media and Outreach
Labor Rights Education
Transforming the Food System
At C2C we believe farmworker justice is deeply intertwined with the struggles of small-scale organic farmers against an increasingly corporatized and industrialized agricultural system. For this reason we participate in the following organizations and movements dedicated to transforming our food system.
Domestic Fair Trade
C2C is a member of the Domestic Fair Trade Association -- a national coalition of farmers, farmworkers, retailers, and processors dedicated to a more just, healthful and sustainable food system. One of the DFTA's primary goals is to educate consumers about social justice and fair trade food labels. To view their evaluations of prominent labels, click below.
Agricultural Justice Project
C2C is a partner of the Agricultural Justice Project which developed and distributes the Food Justice Certified label. This label is based on high-bar social justice standards for farms, processors, and retailers, including every link in the food chain from farm to table. The approach is holistic; ensuring fair treatment of workers, fair pricing for farmers, and fair business practices. Food Justice Certified is designed for all agricultural production systems, fiber and cosmetics as well as food.
Washington State Food Systems Roundtable
Washington State Food Systems Roundtable is a diverse coalition of private and public partners committed to creating a healthy, just and sustainable food system. Rosalinda Guillen and C2C have been members of the Washington State Food Systems Roundtable since 2012, assisting in the drafting and amendments made to the farm worker provisions in the Roundtable’s Draft Prospectus (below).
Whatcom Food Network
C2C is a founding member of the Whatcom Food Network and continues to serve on its steering committee.
WFN Works to build common understanding
and facilitate collaborative efforts
toward an equitable, sustainable
and healthy food system for all.
Agroecology is the science behind sustainable agriculture, from the ground up. It encourages democratic, decentralized decision-making by farmers and incorporates practical, low cost and ecology-based technologies for productive farming. Not only do agro-ecological farming methods strengthen ecological and economic resilience in the face of today's climate, water and energy crises, they offer a path forward for growing food to feed us all.
In 2015, C2C's Edgar Franks, attended Campesino a Campesino: Agroecologia Encuentro, a national gathering of farmworkers and small farmers brought together to share traditional wisdom about growing food for with respect for Mother Earth, cultural and medicinal plant uses, and analysis of the impact of corporate control of agriculture. C2C is currently in the process of cultivating a teaching garden in Bellingham, WA where local farmworkers can learn and practice agro-ecological farming methods.
To learn more about Agroecology check out the resources below from fellow US Food Sovereignty Alliance member Why Hunger.
Awards and Recognitions
In 2014 C2C and FUJ won the US Food Sovereignty Prize from the US Food Sovereignty Alliance. Check out video below to see the acceptance speech.