Ferris Valley Foods Company: Corporate Social Responsibility and Reentry
Ned Larsen, the CEO of Ferris Valley Foods Company (FVF), located in westernMichigan, was focusing on the issue of hiring ex-felons. He planned to ask his management team to consider if (and how) FVF could use information obtained from the Michigan Department of Corrections (and the Michigan Prisoner Reentry Initiative) and West Michigan Therapy, Inc. to benefit people like Lori Mitten, a middle-aged ex-offender who recently earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree and was seeking employment. In a deeper sense, Ferris Valley Foods Company also needed to consider the meaning of corporate social responsibility, with respect to the human, financial, and time-related resources that would be required in order to reach out to ex-offenders. One option might be to adopt a hands-off approach and either do nothing at all or simply make a financial donation to a non-profit organization that provides support for ex-offenders; another could be to become actively involved in partnering with the aforementioned entities. Finally, it could begin to hire ex-offenders. Additional (ethical) complications arise because the CEO's nephew is one of the ex-offenders portrayed in the case.