Dole Food Company, Inc. Announces SA 8000 Certification for Hua Hin, Thailand Factory

Dole Packaged Foods Company, a division of Dole Food Company, announced today that its fruit processing factory in Hua Hin, Thailand has been certified to the Social Accountability International SA 8000 work place and human rights standard.

Dole is the first food company to receive SA 8000 certification in Thailand.

The certification covers the cultivation of pineapple on the 3000 acre plantation as well as the processing plant, which employs more than 5000 people. Products processed in the facility include canned pineapple, tropical fruit cocktail, papaya, guava, rambutan, pomelo, watermelon, lychees and mangos. The Hua Hin facility also has an on-site medical clinic with more than 40,000 annual visits, on-site educational programs and on-site housing--including three dormitories plus family housing units.

SA 8000 is an internationally recognized standard based on International Labor Organization (ILO) conventions and the United Nations' Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Convention on Rights of the child. The standard focuses on child labor, forced labor, health and safety, freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining, discrimination, disciplinary practices, working hours, compensation and the implementation of an efficient management system.

Richard Dahl, president and chief operating officer of Dole Food Company, stated, "This certification is the latest example of Dole's commitment to ensure the Company's operations, wherever located, protect both its work force and the environment. We value the dedication and commitment of our employees and want to make certain that they work in an environment that is safe and values their wellbeing."