Press Release

PMA and United Fresh Ethical Charter on Responsible Labor Practices Gains First Endorsement from Third-Party Certifier

SCS Global Services Says Charter Helps Bring Social Responsibility to the Mainstream

SCS Global Services (SCS), a leading international third-party certification body and standards developer, is pleased to announce its endorsement of the Ethical Charter on Responsible Labor Practices, a joint initiative of the Produce Marketing Association and United Fresh Produce Association. The Charter establishes baseline principles for the ethical treatment of workers in the global fresh produce and floral industries.

“The Charter reflects an important recognition by the industry that responsible labor practices are fundamental to sustainable farming and floriculture, benefiting agricultural producers, workers, and farm communities alike,” said Bonnie Holman, manager of SCS’ food and agriculture sustainability certifications.

The Charter was launched this year to establish guiding principles and values for responsible labor practices throughout the global fresh produce and floral supply chains. It provides a practical framework for industry participants throughout the value chain, emphasizing workplace safety, respect for worker dignity, compliance with legal requirements, and commitment to coordinated action across the industry on responsible labor practices.

“Through its widespread adoption, we believe it will reinforce company efforts to align with sound principles, promote awareness, strengthen supply chain conformance, support stakeholder engagement, and facilitate greater harmonization through benchmarking recognition and industry learning,” said Holman.

SCS has certified agricultural operations around the world to its Sustainably Grown® standard. The certification program is accredited by American National Standards Institute (ANSI), aligned with the Global Social Compliance Programme (GSCP), and recognized by Unilever, the Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH) under its Sustainability Initiative of Fruit and Vegetables (SIFAV) basket of standards, and major brands as part of their sustainable sourcing policies. Fresh fruit and vegetables, nuts, grains, and other crops have been certified in countries on four continents. In addition, SCS is a leading certification body to prominent standards in the field of sustainable agriculture, including the Fair Trade USA and Equitable Food Initiative (EFI) programs.

About SCS Global Services. SCS ( has been providing global leadership in third-party environmental and sustainability certification, auditing, testing, and standards development since 1984, with programs spanning a wide cross-section of industries including food and agriculture, green building, consumer product manufacturing, natural resource management, retail services, and more. SCS is accredited to provide services under a wide range of nationally and internationally recognized certification programs. SCS is a chartered benefit corporation, reflecting its commitment to socially and environmentally responsible business practices.

SCS Media Contact

Linda Brown

Linda Brown

Senior Vice President