Wholesum™ has reflected on the deep impact that the Fair Trade Program has had on its farms and employees. In what the company describes as a monumental achievement, the community development funds generated by the sales of Wholesum’s Fair Trade Certified produce has surpassed the $3 million mark in just five years, with over $1 million being raised in 2018.
“As we reflect on 2018, I’m very proud of what our teams have accomplished here at Wholesum™. Becoming Fair Trade certified has been monumental for Wholesum™. What makes this certification so remarkable is the fact that 100 percent of community development funds generated from the sale of Fair Trade produce go back to our workers and helps them tackle needs such as healthcare, housing and education,” says Ricardo Crisantes, Chief Commercial Officer of Wholesum™. “The workers vote on how these funds are allocated, and that in itself is very empowering.”
Wholesum™ said they were able to reach this milestone largely through their expansion and innovation in the organic produce category. Last year Wholesum™ introduced organic berries into what had been an all-vegetable organic repertoire. Through partnerships with organic berry growers of the same vision and commitment, Wholesum™ now offers organic strawberries and blueberries and will be expanding even further by introducing organic blackberries and cranberries this year.
Wholesum™ also expanded their offerings by adding kaleidos, a medley of red, yellow, orange and brown artisanal snacking tomatoes, to their organic tomato line. “We introduced kaleidos to not only expand our organic produce line to include more specialty selections, but to also give consumers more variety for organically grown baby tomatoes,” says Crisantes. The tomatoes come in a 1 lb. pack with compartments separating the tomatoes and have been a favorite amongst customers and consumers.
With additional new-product and project announcements anticipated to be made this spring, Wholesum™ expects that this year’s community development funds will surpass the previous year. “We are very excited for the upcoming additions and innovations in 2019, and we look forward to giving back to our workers, who really are the foundation for everything we do at Wholesum,” says Crisantes.