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NestlÚ Europe Workers Challenge Company on Possible Musim Mas Link

Posted to the IUF website 25-Apr-2006

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The NestlÚ European Works Council, representing 80,000 company employees, has written NestlÚ to express concern over the possible presence of Musim Mas palm oil and oleochemicals in NestlÚ products. In a letter to NestlÚ CEO Peter Brabeck, works council Co-Chair J÷rg Lindner noted that "NestlÚ is committed to observing minimum standards on rights and responsibilities in its worldwide operations in line with its Corporate Business Principles. NestlÚ supports the United Nations' Global Compact, which asks companies to embrace, support and exert, within their sphere of influence, a set of core values in the areas of human rights and labour standards. We are of the opinion that the mass firing of union members, their eviction from their homes, the expulsion of their children from schools and the use of the police and judicial system to criminalize legitimate trade union activity constitute flagrant violations of these standards and values."

Lindner cautioned that NestlÚ, as a company which had applied for membership in the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), risked contributing to, and being tarnished with, the growing public perception of the RSPO (which includes Musim Mas on its Executive Board) as an exercise in corporate greenwash camouflaging serious rights abuses by the industry. Should NestlÚ fail to act now, wrote Lindner, the consequences for its own public image and that of the RSPO could only deepen as the RSPO came under growing public examination and criticism.

Like the European Works Council at Unilever and a growing number of unions internationally (including the BCTGM in the United States, which recently called on Kraft North America to make public its palm oil sources), the NestlÚ EWC calls on NestlÚ to distance itself from Musim Mas, to reveal its sources for the palm oil in its products and to allow for open scrutiny.



To send a message to the government of Indonesia demanding the immediate and unconditional release of the Musim Mas 6, click here.

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