“The Bitter Work Behind Sugar,” a radio story and podcast by Reveal from the Center for Investigative Reporting, won the 2022 Overseas Press Club of America's (OPC) Morton Frank Award for best international business news reporting in TV, video, radio, audio, or podcast. It was distributed by PRX, and the report was published in Mother Jones.
Reporters Sandy Tolan and Euclides Cordero Nuel, who worked with Reveal editor and producer Michael Montgomery, will discuss their project as part of the OPC's How I Did It series.
Registrants will receive a link to join the Zoom webinar about an hour before the program. RSVP here.
The investigation looked into the sugar cane harvesting camps manned by Haitian immigrants in the Dominican Republic. With information from visits to 10 work camps, more than 100 interviews, and numerous documents from government agencies and lawsuits, the reporting team traced sugar from the Dominican fields to American ports, and the supply chains of major brands such as Domino and Hershey.
The report was a probe into Central Romana Corporation, a privately held sugar-producing company partially owned by the prominent Cuban-American family the Fanjuls. The story shows how the Fanjuls built a global sugar empire through a secretive web of holding companies, partnerships, and affiliates, including a top importer of sugar to the United States. The reporting, which has prompted scrutiny from Congress and the Department of Labor, documented workers enduring $4-a-day wages, staggering debt, substandard housing, and woeful medical care while building the company’s profits.
The moderator is Marina Walker Guevara, executive editor of the Pulitzer Center, which helped fund the project.