Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Greenpeace shames Nestle over source of palm oil in products like Fairtrade KitKat

Thousands of copies of our new leaflet have been downloaded, exposing Nestlé's attempts to undermine the boycott over its baby milk marketing and improve its image using its token Fairtrade KitKat product - which involves just 1% of its cocoa purchase. Nestlé is also criticised for failing to deliver on a promise to end child slavery in its cocoa supply chain.

We need to update the leaflet now to include information from Greenpeace's campaign, exposing the source of plam oil in Nestlé products. Greenpeace states on its site today:

We have new evidence which shows that Nestlé - the makers of Kit Kat - are using palm oil produced in areas where the orang-utans' rainforests once grew. Even worse, the company doesn't seem to care.

Greenpeace are organising a protest at Nestlé (UK) HQ today and have released the youtube clip below.

Click here for Nestlé's response - it says, "we have made a commitment to using only "Certified Sustainable Palm Oil" by 2015."

Sounds a bit like its commitment in 2001 to end child slavery in its cocoa supply chain by 2005. Nestlé has not only failed to deliver on this and an extended deadline of 2008, it has been obstructive to the process. Let's hope its statement on palm oil is not also an empty promise to diffuse bad publicity.

The protest comes as Nestlé launches its latest 'Creating Shared Value' report boasting of its claimed beneficial impact around the world. The previous report prompted a complaint by leading experts on Nestlé to the office of the UN Global Compact, which publishes the reports on its website. See:

I note from Nestlé's press release that Hilary Parsons, formerly of Nestlé (UK), has been promoted to Nestlé S.A. Public Affairs Manager. A few years ago Hilary lost a series of debates with me on Nestlé's baby milk marketing activities, despite her best efforts to mislead people. Nestlé now refuses to even speak if Baby Milk Action is present. While some may question Hilary's effectiveness at PR when Nestlé is the most boycotted company in the UK and one of the four most boycotted on the planet, her promotion indicates to me once again what Nestlé's real values are.

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