Wendy’s contract has not been renewed, FAU spokesperson confirms

Wendy’s, which is not part of the Fair Food Program, is not returning to campus for the foreseeable future following years of student protests.


Caroline Ribeiro

Protesters in the CIW march in Bradley Park, April 2

Caroline Ribeiro, Contributing Writer

FAU spokesperson Joshua Glanzer confirmed in a recent email that the university declined to renew its contract with Wendy’s.

“I can confirm their contract was not renewed,” Glanzer wrote in an April 6 email to the UP. He did not specify the reason the university did not renew the contract. “No additional information is available at this time.”

There has been a student effort to remove the Wendy’s on campus for several years because the company has declined to participate in the Fair Food Program.

The Coalition of Immokalee Workers’ founded the program in 2010 in an attempt to provide better protections for farm workers, who in years past have been victims of human rights violations. McDonald’s, Walmart, Burger King, and more corporations have joined since its creation in 2010.

In 2019, the Boca Raton House of Representatives passed a resolution recommending that university officials remove the Wendy’s on campus. They then forwarded the resolution to Chartwells, the university’s food provider, but neither side took further action.

Some students attended the CIW’s march in Bradley Park on April 2 demanding that FAU terminate its contract with Wendy’s. They wanted to end what they believe is modern-day slavery and to take a stance against Wendy’s refusal to join the Fair Food Program.

“Students are vital for this fight,” said Kayla Barnes, a junior majoring in interdisciplinary studies who took part in the protest. “Human rights are being violated.”

The corporation defended its choice to not be part of the program, citing changes they’d already made.

“In 2018, Wendy’s made a significant change to our sourcing strategy by purchasing our North American tomato supply exclusively from indoor, hydroponic greenhouse farms,” wrote a Wendy’s spokesperson in a March 28 email. “We simply have not purchased field-grown, commodity tomatoes from areas in which the Fair Food Program operates for several years now; so, there is no nexus between the Fair Food Program and our supply chain today.”

Gerardo Reyes, who has worked with the CIW for 23 years, doesn’t believe that the corporation is being genuine.

“They are playing with words. There is no oversight in those greenhouses,” said Reyes. “If you ask Wendy’s, ‘can you guarantee that there is no modern day slavery in your farms?’ The answer is no.”

The UP contacted Chartwells on March 29, but did not receive a response by publication time.

Caroline Ribeiro is a contributing writer for the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or message her on Instagram @carolpardiniribeiro