( File photo )

The Produce Marketing Association and United Fresh Produce Association, which jointly launched the Ethical Charter on Responsible Labor Practices, are offering a web seminar as they seek endorsers of the document.

The Dec. 4 web seminar aims to educate companies in the produce and floral supply chains about the Ethical Charter, introduced by the industry associations in July.

The seminar is at 11 a.m. Pacific/2 p.m. Eastern. Participants can register online.

PMA CEO Cathy Burns and United Fresh President and CEO Tom Stenzel will discuss the charter, and representatives of companies that have endorsed it will also speak:

Soren Bjorn, president of Driscoll’s of the Americas;

David Marguleas, executive vice president of Sun World International LLC; and

Preston Witt, human rights director of global sustainability and compliance for Costco Wholesale.

This is the first web seminar on the Ethical Charter, and its goal is to “inform participants and future endorsers why the associations launched this collaboration, share the vision of the Charter and how it was developed, and discuss the Charter’s values, goals and principles,” according to a news release.

Brian Kocher, CEO of the Castellini Group of Cos. and Russell Mounce, vice president of produce and floral for Sam’s Club, were co-chairmen of the Joint Committee on Responsible Labor Practices for United Fresh and PMA, respectively.

“We are excited to share the stories of how our industry is positioning their corporate initiatives through use of the Charter,” Stenzel said in the release. “But there is still progress to be made. We encourage additional companies to endorse the Charter and continue to build upon the hard work being done in compliance with applicable laws in responsible labor practices.”

Burns said about 70 companies have endorsed the Ethical Charter, and more are expected after the web seminar.

“Through the leadership of our webinar panelists and the companies they represent, this session will provide more opportunities for industry stakeholders to gain clarity about the role the Charter plays in elevating our pledge to ensure workers throughout the global produce and floral supply chains are treated fairly and humanely with dignity and respect,” she said in the release.

Instructions on how to endorse the Charter, and a list of those that have already endorsed it, are online.