Responsible Sourcing Network Releases Cotton Survey Results
The Responsible Sourcing Network, a project of the nonprofit organization, As You Sow, dedicated to ending forced labor utilized in the production of raw materials, released a report showing the results of a cotton survey administered in 2013. Through the survey the organization evaluated the practices carried out by apparel and home goods companies to analyze risk, implement procedures, and disclose practices to eliminate forced labor associated with cotton production.
Among the 49 companies that were surveyed, Fruit of the Loom was among the top 10 rated companies, along with adidas, Patagonia, and Phillips-Van Heusen. Fruit of the Loom scored well in the areas of supplier disclosure, not sourcing cotton from Uzbekistan, cotton spinner and mill monitoring, and cotton country of origin tracking.
The results also present opportunities for improvement, including disclosure of progress and results towards goals, engagement with multi-stakeholders, increased communication with suppliers, and development of a traceability program. We will take advantage of these opportunities in order to establish a more sustainable supply chain in which the individuals who make Fruit of the Loom products are treated with dignity and respect.
Special Olympics Awards Fruit of the Loom Honduras
The Special Olympics of Honduras presented an award to Fruit of The Loom in recognition of their continuous and unconditional support of the program in Cortés, Honduras, which serves 370 special athletes. This distinction marks the long history of Fruit of The Loom Honduras as a sponsor of the Special Olympics, granting the opportunity for the athletes to compete in both local and international games. Currently, the Special Olympics in Cortés trains athletes in swimming, athletics, bocce, soccer, gymnastics, floor hockey, tennis, and bowling. It also offers programs for families, young athletes, healthy athletes, youth, and schools.
Fruit of the Loom, Inc., Named Recipient of the Secretary of State’s Award for Corporate Excellence
Fruit of the Loom, Inc., has been named a recipient of the 2013 Secretary of State’s Award for Corporate Excellence (ACE), which recognizes the important role U.S. businesses play abroad as good corporate citizens. One of three winners this year, Fruit of the Loom, Inc. is being recognized by the U.S. State Department for its exemplary corporate citizenship practices in Honduras, including pioneering union advancements at its local garment manufacturing facilities. Click here to read more.
Fruit of the Loom CEO Rick Medlin accepts the award from Secretary of State John Kerry
United Students Against Sweatshops Recognizes Fruit’s Leadership in Key CSR Initiatives
United Students Against Sweatshops commends Fruit of the Loom’s recent CSR initiatives in Bangladesh and Honduras. Click here to read more.
Fruit of the Loom Signs Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh
Fruit of the Loom is committed to ensuring the safety of workers producing our goods in Bangladesh and throughout our supply chain. As part of that commitment, on December 16, 2013, we signed the Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangledesh, an independent agreement designed to make all garment factories in Bangladesh safe workplaces. At the same time, Fruit of the Loom intends to remain an active member of the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety. We believe that participating in both the Accord and the Alliance gives us the maximum ability to ensure the safety of garment workers in Bangladesh.
Fruit of the Loom Statement in Response to Report Regarding Haiti Minimum Wage Issues
We are greatly concerned about the recent report from the Workers Rights Consortium (WRC) regarding the issue of minimum wage compliance in the Haitian garment industry. It is our view that the clear intent of Haiti’s minimum wage law is for production rates to be set in such a manner as to allow workers to earn at least 300 gourdes for 8 hours of work in a day. Based on our independent investigation, we concur with the WRC that the garment industry in Haiti generally falls short of that standard.
Fruit of the Loom’s Code of Conduct requires, at minimum, strict compliance with applicable laws. With respect to the Haiti minimum wage regulations, we are committed to ensuring that our Haitian suppliers come into compliance with the law of Haiti. For purposes of measuring wage compliance, we will utilize the standard that has been employed by the ILO/IFC Better Work Haiti program. We plan to engage with the WRC and other relevant stakeholders, including worker representatives in Haiti, to address this issue. We recognize that remedies for past violations will be a topic of this discussion.
For further information, please contact Stan Blankenship, Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility, at 270-781-6400.
Associates Complete Leadership Program in Honduras
Setting a new mark in the industry, associates of Fruit of the Loom Honduras were recognized on Saturday, December 7 for their achievement in completing the “Leadership Skills and Manufacturing Management” continuing education program. There were 222 participants certified from the Fruit of the Loom sewing plants in Honduras, including supervisors, department heads and managers.
The course was developed by the Fruit of The Loom Technological Center in connection with the PROCINCO program, led by the Honduran Maquila Association. The 112 hour course provides innovative tools for both personal and professional development.
Associates of El Provenir Manufacturing S. de R.L de C.V. (Tela)
Associates of VFI de Honduras S.A. de C.V.
Associates of Confecciones Dos Caminos S. de R.L. de C.V. (Zip Bufalo)
Breast Milk Donation
Fruit of the Loom El Salvador, in conjunction with the Breast Milk Bank in San Juan de Dios Santa Ana National Hospital, promotes the DONAMOR program. Through the program, nursing mothers within the company have shared 100 liters of milk to feed newborns that are kept in incubators or that are otherwise hospitalized.
Sixty infants have directly benefited from the program from June to December 2013, thanks to the generosity of the Fruit of the Loom associates. Managers of the Breast Milk Bank at the hospital are grateful to the volunteer mothers as well as the nurses who keep the milk fresh.
Donate blood, Donate life
The Fruit of the Loom El Salvador campaign, “Donate blood, Donate life,” encouraged associates to give blood in both April and November 2013. Thanks to 1,180 volunteers for their generous donation to the blood bank at San Juan de Dios Santa Ana National Hospital. The blood drive helped 37 Fruit of the Loom associates who requested 69 units of blood, either for themselves or their families.
“Donate blood, Donate life,” brings the community closer and encourages associates to help one another as well as those in need in the community.
First Collective Bargaining Agreement is Signed at Jerzees Buena Vista
Jerzees Buena Vista and the SITRAJERZEESBV labor union completed and signed the first collective bargaining agreement for the plant on Friday, October 25 in the city of San Pedro Sula in northern Honduras. Representatives from the Ministry of Labor and the Coordinator of the General Confederation of Workers (CGT) of Honduras for the Choloma region, Evangelina Argueta, attended the signing. Both the union and company representatives praised the completion of the agreement as well as the respectful and cordial environment of the agreement process.
Collective Bargaining Agreement signing
Registration with the Ministry of Labor
Fruit of the Loom Awarded Corporate Social Responsibility Seal for the Fifth Consecutive Year
The Honduran Foundation for Corporate Social Responsibility, FUNDAHRSE, acknowledged the work and dedication of Fruit of the Loom Honduras by awarding them the Corporate Social Responsibility Seal for the fifth consecutive year. This award is issued after a rigorous evaluation of our actions on the seven pillars of CSR: Governance, Internal Public, Marketing, Environment, Suppliers, Community and Public Policy.
This year, we achieved a rating of 95%, two points higher than in 2012. We are currently ranked in the top 10 companies for social responsibility in Honduras.
The award was presented to Raul Sorto of Textiles Merendon; Ricardo Trujillo, Director of Education; and Rodolfo Posadas, Maintenance Manager who accepted the Seal on behalf of the company. The three are distinguished by their spirit of solidarity and commitment to social responsibility strategy.
Redskins’ Pierre Garcon donates football uniforms to Roosevelt, Jefferson and Springbrook
After Garcon held a contest through the Redskins’ social media platform in June, three high schools — Jefferson, Springbrook and Roosevelt — were selected to receive hundreds of new uniforms through Russell Athletic, which signed Garcon to an endorsement deal last year. Read More from the Washington Post
Fruit of the Loom makes $101,000 gift to American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life
The American Cancer Society recognizes Fruit of the Loom, Inc., based in Bowling Green, for its recent donation to the American Cancer Society Relay For Life. On Wednesday, September 4, the company provided the society a $101,401 gift to support the organization’s mission to save lives and create more birthdays by helping people stay well and get well, by finding cures and by fighting back against cancer.
“The money given by Fruit of the Loom will help the American Cancer Society fight for every birthday threatened by cancer in every community,” said Ayron Corbitt, American Cancer Society Kentucky state vice president. “We are grateful for such a wonderful community partner that cares about eliminating this disease as much as we do.”
“Fighting cancer is everyone’s business,” said Rick Medlin, Fruit of the Loom’s president and chief executive officer. “We are pleased to have the opportunity to support the American Cancer Society in making a difference in this fight on various fronts. I am proud of our commitment to this cause, and I look forward to our continued relationship with the American Cancer Society Relay For Life as well as the CEOs Against Cancer Kentucky Chapter.”
Salvadorian Children Enjoy New Classroom
The Balsamar Plant of Fruit of the Loom El Salvador inaugurated a new fourth grade classroom at the Centro Escolar El Bosque School, located in the suburbs of Ciudad Arce.
The school principal, Guadalupe Cuellar, acknowledged the support of the company and Fruit of the Loom volunteers.
The ribbon cutting was done by the Vice President of Manufacturing for El Salvador, Jaime Guevara, as well as school representatives and Fruit of the Loom volunteers.
Recognition for Altruistic Work in El Salvador
Under the “Altruistic Donor Day”, the San Juan de Dios Hospital, in Santa Ana, El Salvador, gave special recognition to each of our Fruit of the Loom plants in El Salvador, for their continued support of blood donation campaigns.
A representative from each plant received a certificate of recognition for this important humanitarian initiative.
Milk Bank Donations
In the spirit of solidarity, associates of our plants from Fruit of the Loom El Salvador joined the campaign “Donate a Bottle”, by which 940 units were collected for the Milk Bank of San Juan de Dios Hospital, in the city of Santa Ana.
The bottles allow a more hygenic food collection process to benefit infants in the hospital’s intensive care ward.
Award Recognition for Hiring People with Disabilities
For over five years, Fruit of the Loom El Salvador has been working with The Helen Keller Foundation to hire and integrate people with disabilities into its workforce. Fruit of the Loom El Salvador was the recipient of the Helen Keller Foundation Recognition Award for its vision and goals in adapting to employees with disabilities.
Fruit of the Loom Improves Schools in El Salvador
Fruit of the Loom has improved conditions at several schools in El Salvador. Teams of volunteers recently constructed a kitchen and warehouse at a school serving 900 students in Ciudad Obrera.View Photo Gallery
Fruit of the Loom Central America is Recognized by FUNDAHRSE
For the 5th year in a row, Fruit of the Loom has been recognized as a socially responsible company by Fundahrse, the Honduran foundation for corporate social responsibility. Due to its ethical vision and focus on employee well being, Fruit of the Loom’s facilities in Honduras have shined as a model of community support. “We feel proud of the quality of our people and the numerous activities we perform,” the company stated in a Fundahrse publication. “Our corporate volunteers are our fundamental pillar.” Employees of Fruit of the Loom Central America have made an effort to excel in bettering their communities by educating their partners in socially-responsible behavior, organizing health fairs, executing after-school programs, implementing environmental initiatives, and being dedicated to school sponsorships. Fundahrse, which received its legal status in 2004, works as an agent of change in the region, with a goal of promoting economic prosperity, social development, well being, labor fairness, and respect for the environment.View Photo Gallery
Alabama United Way Chapter Recognizes Russell Contributions
Russell Athletic was recognized by the Lake Martin United Way as its top business contributor for 2013. Through donations and community involvement with United Way, the Russell team has solidified its commitment to making the community it serves a happier and healthier place.
Fruit of the Loom Supports Education in Honduras
Fruit of the Loom’s Honduras division recently built a new kindergarten classroom at Edith Marisela Figueroa School in the city of El Progreso in northern Honduras. The new room is furnished with items built by maintenance associates at the El Porvenir Manufacturing facility, and volunteers worked to restore other older desks throughout the school. The renovation and expansion of the school allows for enrollment in kindergarten to double, meeting educational needs of many more families in the area.
Fruit of the Loom Supports Employee Education
Thirty-seven employees of Fruit of the Loom’s El Salvador division recently completed “Train the Trainer” education courses. Maribel Vadillo de Ortiz, Process Engineering Country Manager, said Fruit of the Loom’s commitment is to foster an environment of success that will allow associates to develop their potential, as well as involve others in the improvement culture of the company.
Fruit of the Loom, Inc. Backs Local Elementary Education
Fruit of the Loom, Inc. recently hosted a kickoff dinner to launch the formal fundraising campaign for “Leader in Me,” an educational initiative in the Bowling Green, Kentucky area aimed at giving students the foundation they need to be successful throughout their lives. Based on the Sean Covey book, “Seven Habits of Highly Effective Kids,” the program was recently rolled out in all public elementary and high schools in Bowling Green and Warren County, Kentucky, and is already producing students who were described by Jane Beshear, First Lady of Kentucky, as “kind and polite.” Anderson Hostetler, VP of Education and Development for Fruit of the Loom, Inc., currently serves on the leadership council responsible for developing the local program.
PICTURED: Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear poses for a photo with a student participating in the “Leader in Me,” program in Warren County.
FOTL, Inc. Honored with Live United Award
Fruit of the Loom, Inc. was recently honored by the United Way of Southern Kentucky with the presentation of the 2012 LIVE UNITED AWARD. This award, the most prestigious given by United Way, celebrates one local company per year that has excelled in furthering the mission of the organization. Recognized for exemplifying United Way’s core “give, advocate, and volunteer” goals, Fruit of the Loom demonstrated outstanding campaign support, increased giving, and exceptional volunteer participation in 2012. Additionally, Fruit of the Loom, Inc. was presented with other awards from the United Way of Southern Kentucky, including the TOP GIVER AWARD, the LEADERSHIP INVESTMENT AWARD, and the PACESETTER AWARD. Fruit of the Loom, Inc. is proud to support the United Way of Southern Kentucky and plans to continue to set the tone for local campaigns in support of the organization.
Fruit of the Loom Donates Hospital Blankets, Sheets and Robes
The Fruit of the Loom Central America team recently presented 186,000 baby blankets to Rosa Elena de Lobo, First Lady of Honduras, following her request for hospital provisions throughout the country. The team also donated cloth to make sheets, blankets, and robes for both adult and pediatric patients at Mario C. Rivas Hospital and Hospital El Progreso in northern Honduras.
The First Lady of Honduras, Rosa Elena Bonilla de Lobo: “Thanks to the Fruit of the Loom Inc. representatives for their valuable support and donation of clothing and bedding that will benefit the Honduran population as well as the nurseries in the public hospitals in our country.”
Russell Athletic Names Pop Warner Little Scholars Recipient
Russell Athletic recently awarded a $5,000 scholarship to 13-year-old Isaiah Martinez, an outstanding Imperial Valley, Calif. eighth-grader who dreams of studying Sports Medicine at the University of Texas. The award, given through the Pop Warner Little Scholars program, was announced at the organization’s All-American Scholar Weekend at Walt Disney World. Martinez was recognized over thousands of applicants due to his 3.8 grade-point average and dedication to community service.
FOTL, Inc. Shares CSR Strategy with US Ambassador
Lisa Kubiske, US Ambassador to Honduras, recently visited two Fruit of the Loom plants in Honduras to learn about the company’s Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives and our continuous improvement in labor practices. Ambassador Kubiske spoke with the management team and union associates at the Jerzees Nuevo Dia factory about new trends in working environments.
FOTL, Inc. Provides a Safe Environment to Learn
Joining with parents and city officials, Fruit of the Loom’s Confecciones Dos Caminos plant recently donated the time and resources needed to build new classrooms for 115 students at Francis Charles Ewens school in Honduras.
FOTL, Inc. Donates Over $178,000 to the American Cancer Society Hope Lodge
The American Cancer Society Hope Lodge provides free lodging to cancer patients and their families who travel to Lexington, Kentucky for treatment. On June 27, Fruit of the Loom President and CEO, Rick Medlin, presented the American Cancer Society with a check for one of the largest donations the Lodge has received in recent years.
“Fruit of the Loom’s brand promise is bringing comfort to every day,” Medlin said. “Whether through our apparel or philanthropic initiatives like Hope Lodge, bringing comfort to consumers, patients, and families is paramount. I look forward to continuing our relationship with the American Cancer Society and Hope Lodge as the First Chairman and Cofounder of the Kentucky Chapter of CEOs Against Cancer.”
“The money given by Fruit of the Loom will ensure that cancer patients from across our state will get the care and support they need at the Lodge,” said Sarah Ronniger, Development Officer for the American Cancer Society. “We are grateful for such a wonderful community partner that cares about eliminating this disease as much as we do.”
Fruit of the Loom Meets with First Lady of Honduras to Share CSR Strategy
Leaders from Fruit of the Loom’s Central American division recently met with Rosa Elena de Lobo, the First Lady of Honduras, at her home in Tegucigalpa. The focus of the meeting was to secure the First Lady’s support of CSR efforts at Fruit of the Loom in the form of health fairs and hospital partnerships. Currently, Fruit of the Loom offers doctor visits at on‐site health fairs, and coordinates the use of a mobile breast cancer screening center that is provided by the Honduran government. As a result of the visit, Fruit of the Loom gained the support of the First Lady in removing the beaurocratic barriers that sometimes delay beneficial projects.
FOTL, Inc. Vice President Receives Patriot Award
Stuart McNaughton, Vice President of Manufacturing at Fruit of the Loom, was recently honored with a Patriot Award in recognition of his extraordinary support of an employee serving in the Kentucky National Guard. McNaughton was nominated by Roger Blair, an employee who completed a six-month tour of duty to Iraq in December of 2011. Upon Blair’s return, he was welcomed back to his job at Fruit of the Loom with McNaughton’s support. The Kentucky Committee for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve created the award to publicly recognize companies and individuals who provide outstanding support to Guardsmen and women who have answered the nation’s call to serve.
FOTL, Inc. Donates Surgery Room in Honduran Hospital
Fruit of the Loom’s Central America division recently donated supplies and equipment valuing almost $21,000 to renovate a room in the Mario C. Rivas Hospital in San Pedro Sula, Honduras. The room, which has been named the Fruit of the Loom room, was transformed into a location for ER doctors to perform minor surgeries. Video used with permission from the Department of Communications and Marketing within the Honduran Manufacturer’s Association.
Russell Athletic Supports Local High School Football
Russell Athletic, a division of Fruit of the Loom, has agreed to serve as the title sponsor for the Commonwealth Gridiron Bowl through 2014. The Gridiron Bowl, which serves as the championship playoff series for Kentucky High School Football, is held on the campus of Western Kentucky University (WKU) in Bowling Green. “This partnership allows us to tie in Kentucky high school athletics, WKU, and the City of Bowling Green to help create a memorable experience … for many years to come,” said Gary Barfield, Executive Vice President of Russell.