Nestlé Fairtrade KitKat added to boycott list
Nestlé announced in January 2010 that its four-finger KitKat bars would carry the Fairtrade logo, benefitting 6,000 farmers who gain about an extra £400,000 per year from the Fairtrade premium. Nestlé’s has already received global publicity for this investment, a fraction of the price of the £43 million Nescafé UK advertising campaign running at the same time as the announcement. Nestlé Fairtrade KitKat involves just 1% of the cocoa Nestlé purchases, while the company is criticised for failing to deliver on its promise to end child slavery in the supply chain as a whole by 2006.
Download our free leaflet on Fairtrade KitKat from the Virtual Shop.
Baby Milk Action suggests chocolate lovers wanting a fair deal for farmers look to companies that are committed to Fair Trade and don’t just use it for marketing purposes.
In March, Greenpeace launched a report and 1-minute spoof advertisement highlighting that Nestlé was sourcing palm oil, used in Fairtrade KitKat and other Nestlé products, from Indonesia, where the industry is criticised for cutting down the rainforest. The clip showed a bored office working biting into a finger of KitKat that was really the finger of an Orang-utan, endangered as the rainforest shrinks.
Nestlé had the clip removed from youtube for a time, claiming breach of copyright and stated, “we have made a commitment to using only 'Certified Sustainable Palm Oil' by 2015” - much the same as it promised to end child slavery in its cocoa supply chain within five years in 2001.
Greenpeace activists broke through the roof of the Nestlé shareholder meeting in April and in May announced victory after meeting with Nestlé executives. Nestlé’s undertaking remains the same - it has a plan to source sustainable palm oil by 2015 - but Greenpeace reports, “The Forest Trust (TFT) - an independent organisation we’ve worked with before - will be closely monitoring Nestlé’s progress. In fact, TFT worked on the plan and will be making sure Nestlé stick to it.”
Body Shop was added to the Nestlé boycott list in 2006 after the late Dame Anita Roddick sold it to L’Oreal, part-owned by Nestlé. We raised concerns about the fate of Day Chocolate Company, manufacturer of Divine chocolate, part-owned by Body Shop. Dame Roddick asked us to hold adding this to the boycott list and managed to transfer the holding to the Ghanaian farmers cooperative, Kuapa Kokoo, giving it 47% ownership. The company continues to be 100% Fairtrade.
Create problems, solve them, make $$s
While continuing to spend billions promoting the junk foods which make us obese, in 2011 Nestlé will create a new Institute of Health Science to develop foods that will ‘treat and prevent illness’ and ‘improve health and prolong life.’ Nestlé will bridge the ‘divide between pure healthcare and nutritional food by researching ways to prevent diet-related diseases.’ All part of its strategic change of direction to become a ‘nutrition, health and wellness company’.