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Eating cashew nuts is hardly gruelling. Collecting and processing them, however, is. It is also dangerous work - because the shells contain toxic chemicals – and grotesquely underpaid.
In the exact opposite of fair trade practices, supermarkets make about £1 profit on a £2.50 bag of cashews, according to the Guardian newspaper. The person who shelled them made three pence.
Being almost a luxury food and commanding decent prices, cashew nuts could provide a much-needed economic boost for developing countries. As it is, the only ones getting an economic boost are western corporations.
Retailers raking in hefty profits while farmers and workers get almost nothing is unethical in the extreme, and not a trade model the European Union ought to support or allow.
Supermarkets should not be getting away with abusive trade practices – it’s time for proper regulation.
Tell EU officials to end injustice in the retail industry.
We the undersigned ask that you call an end to unethical trading practices in the retail industry. The example of the cashew nut trade, where supermarkets make over 30 times as much in profit on the cashews as workers in African countries and India get paid, is a particular grotesque one, and not something the EU should tolerate.
Please take action to ensure that the farmers and processors of foods sold in European Union countries get paid properly. The sector needs full and proper regulation, and we ask that you see this happens.
Thank you for your attention.