In the little town of La Virgen, Costa Rica you’ll find Finca Corsicana, a Whole Trade® Guarantee partner that supplies Whole Foods Market® with pineapples. But this is no ordinary pineapple farm! In fact, Finca Corsicana opened a learning center this past January, and I was honored to attend as part of the Whole Foods Market family. What a great event! Over 150 workers and people from the community showed up to celebrate.Whole Trade premiums provide workers and communities with the funds to do amazing things, like work with Whole Foods Market® to open this state-of-the-art learning center. There are four classrooms in this top-notch facility where the center will teach English as a Second Language and computer skills classes to adults and youth. The computer room has 20 brand new computers and all the rooms have some very cool desks made by a local wood worker.
The money that comes from the purchase of Whole Trade Guarantee products not only helped build the center – it helps staff the school, too. The new learning center plans to have over 500 students enrolled. And here’s the best part: the school is for the whole community, not just the workers from Finca Corsicana.
Finca Corsicana workers voted to choose the community project and the committee that organized the project was made up of workers, as well. You could feel everyone’s pride in this ambitious project, one that took a lot of planning, responsibility and hard work. But the workers aren’t stopping with the learning center; they have plans to build a children’s day care center and a gymnasium on the same property. Both of these are needed by the community, and I’m sure they’ll accomplish their goal.The speeches at the event really moved me. The attendees talked about how the center will give people a chance to improve their lives and the lives of their families, and how it will give them an opportunity to grow and learn. All of these benefits, simply by sourcing food from farmers who care about their community and their workers…now that’s food with a purpose!
Have you tried a Whole Trade pineapple lately? How was it and how did you prepare it?