Chile: UK supermarkets linked to avocados sourced from regions where water rights abuses occur; incl. co comments
Author: Alice Facchini and Sandra Laville, The Guardian, Published on: 17 May 2018
Major UK supermarkets including Tesco, Morrisons, Waitrose, Aldi and Lidl source avocados from Chile’s largest avocado-producing province, Petorca, where water rights have been violated...
[M]any avocado plantations install illegal pipes and wells in order to divert water from rivers to irrigate their crops. As a result, [...] residents are now obliged to use often contaminated water delivered by truck...
The British Retail Consortium, which represents the major supermarkets, said the stores had been made aware of the allegations. A spokesperson said: “Our members have been made aware of the allegations made regarding production practices of avocados in the Petorca region of Chile. Retailers will work with their suppliers to investigate this.
“Safeguarding the welfare of people and communities in supply chains is fundamental to our sourcing practices as a responsible industry.”
Lidl said most of its avocados came from a supplier whose practices they trusted. But the store said it would investigate to see if any of its fruits came from Petorca.
A spokesman said: “While not all of our avocados are sourced from the Chilean province of Petorca, those that do come from this region are sourced from Rainforest Alliance-certified producers. Nevertheless, we were concerned to learn of these allegations and will therefore be investigating the matter with both our supplier and the Rainforest Alliance.”