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CorpWatch Exclusives

Agrica’s Tanzania Rice Scheme Has Devastated Local Farmers, Say NGOs
by Richard SmallteacherCorpWatch Blog
July 7th, 2015
A flagship rice plantation in Tanzania run by UK investors has allegedly destroyed the livelihoods of local smallholder farmers, driven them into debt and impacted the local environment, according to a new report published by the Oakland Institute. The report was co-authored with Greenpeace Africa and Global Justice Now.

Nestle Recalls 400 Million Packets of Instant Noodles in India
by Richard SmallteacherCorpWatch Blog
June 18th, 2015
Nestle says that it will destroy 400 million packets of Maggi brand instant noodles in India worth some Rs 320 crores ($50.5 million). The company made the announcement after the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India found “hazardous” levels of lead in company products and ordered legal action.

Australian “Free Range” Chicken Company Alleged to Use Exploited Labor
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
May 11th, 2015
Baiada, one of Australia’s biggest poultry producers, has been accused of using labor contractors that under pay and exploit foreign visitors on temporary work permits. The company sells Steggles and Lilydale Free Range Chickens to supermarket and fast food chains like Aldi, Coles, KFC and Woolworths.

Florida Tomato Pickers Sign Up New Major Retail Chains For Higher Wages
by Fatima HansiaCorpWatch Blog
March 10th, 2015
The Fresh Market, a major U.S. retail chain, recently joined the Coalition of Immokalee Workers’ Fair Food Program, adding another victory in the battle for humane working conditions for tomato pickers in Florida’s $650 million industry. Thirteen companies including Burger King, McDonald's and Walmart have signed up so far.

Bangladeshi Tribals Evicted For Tea Plantation Expansion
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
March 6th, 2015
Syed Tea and Land, a Bangladeshi company, has been accused of using armed men to evict ethnic minority communities in order to expand a tea plantation in Sreemangal in northeastern Bangladesh. The expansion will impact Kandas, Khasis and Tantis who have lived in the area for a century.

European Supermarkets Defend Low Wages To Moroccan Tomato Pickers
by Mayu ChangCorpWatch Blog
November 12th, 2014
Tomato pickers in Morocco – who supply fresh produce during the winter to big European supermarket chains like Albert Heijn in the Netherlands and Sainsbury’s and Tesco in the UK – are paid poverty wages, according to a new report from Fairfood International.

Indian Rose Exporter Declares Bankruptcy in the Netherlands
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
October 2nd, 2014
A subsidiary of Karaturi Global, the Indian flower export multinational accused of land grabbing in Ethiopia and Kenya, has been declared bankrupt by a Dutch court. The company owes some $300,000 in the Netherlands, as well as upwards of $4 million in taxes in Kenya.

Migrant Rights Activist Fights Thai Pineapple Company Lawsuit
by Pratap Chatterjee
September 12th, 2014
Natural Fruit, one of Thailand’s largest pineapple processors, has sued Andy Hall, a British researcher, over a report that he worked on for Finnwatch on labor abuses in the industry. Hall faces some seven years in jail and $10 million in fines.

Fast Food Workers Hold Biggest Ever Strike For Wages in U.S.
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
September 5th, 2014
Hundreds of low wage fast food workers were arrested at strikes and protests in some 100 cities around the U.S. on September 4. They were demanding that companies like Burger King, KFC, McDonald's and Wendy's pay workers a living wage of $15 an hour.

Papua New Guinea Landowners Win Lands Back From Malaysian Palm Oil Plantation
by Fatima HansiaCorpWatch Blog
June 16th, 2014
A Papua New Guinea (PNG) court revoked two 99 year land titles awarded to Kuala Lumpur Kepong (KLK) of Malaysia to develop palm oil plantations on 38,350 hectares of land in Collingwood Bay in Oro province following complaints of land grabbing by customary landowners.

World Bank Agrees to Investigate Labor Conditions at Indian Tea Company
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
February 21st, 2014
The World Bank has agreed to investigate Amalgamated Plantations Private Limited (APPL) in India for abusive working conditions on tea plantations in the north-eastern Indian state of Assam, following a formal complaint by workers. A Columbia Law School team has confirmed the workers allegations.

Mauritanian Villagers Protest Saudi National Prawn Company Investment
by Richard SmallteacherCorpWatch Blog
February 5th, 2014
Villagers in Boghé, a community 190 miles south west of the Mauritanian capital of Nouakchott, are protesting a proposed $1 billion investment by the Saudi National Prawn Company (NPC) in an aquaculture project in the Senegal river valley that will cover 31,000 hectares.

World Bank Slammed for Dinant Loan Linked to Honduran Killings
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
January 14th, 2014
An independent ombudsman has confirmed that World Bank officials should have raised serious questions before the International Finance Corporation (IFC) – the private sector arm of the World Bank – approved a $30 million loan to Corporación Dinant in Honduras in 2009 for palm oil plantation projects.

Chocolate Slavery Case Against Nestlé Allowed to Proceed
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
December 24th, 2013
Eight years after they sued Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), Cargill and Nestlé for allegedly forcing them to work as child labor on a Côte d'Ivoire cocoa plantation, three young men from Mali have won a small victory – the ability to be heard in a California court.

Police Attack Palm Oil Protestors in Sierra Leone
by Richard SmallteacherCorpWatch Blog
December 10th, 2013
Sierra Leone police opened fire on a group of protestors who were demonstrating against a palm oil plantation in the southern province of Pujehun. The project is being developed by Societe Financiere des Caoutchoucs (Socfin), a French agri-business giant.

Canada Approves Genetically Modified Salmon Exports to Panama
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
November 25th, 2013
AquaBounty, a U.S. biotechnology company based in Maryland, has secured approval from the Canadian government to export 100,000 AquAdvantage salmon eggs from Prince Edward Island in eastern Canada to Chiriquí province in western Panama.

Potash Cartel Causes Friction Between Russia and Belarus
by Richard SmallteacherCorpWatch Blog
November 21st, 2013
A clash between Belaruskali and Uralkali – the global potash exporters from Belarus and Russia respectively – almost destroyed a global cartel that has artificially kept prices of fertilizer as high as $400 a ton in international markets.

Del Monte Plantation Workers Win Settlement in Global Horizons Case
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
November 18th, 2013
Some 150 Thai workers on a Del Monte pineapple plantation in Hawaii will get $1.2 million to settle allegations of sub-standard working conditions. The lawsuit was filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission against seven companies including Global Horizons, a labor recruiter from Los Angeles.

Flower Growers in Kenya Strike Against Karuturi Global
by Pratap Chatterjee
October 10th, 2013
Flower growers in Kenya have gone on strike to protest unpaid wages from Karuturi Global, the Indian flower export multinational. The strike is the latest in a series of problems that have caused the company share price to plummet from over Rs39 in 2008 to Rs0.63 in mid-September 2013.

New Zealand Dairy Exporter Admits Third Contamination Scandal
by Richard SmallteacherCorpWatch Blog
August 5th, 2013
Fonterra, a New Zealand company and the world’s largest dairy exporter, has apologized for exporting a milk formula ingredient contaminated with potentially toxic bacteria. The incident comes six years after a company subsidiary in China sold contaminated baby milk formula that killed six infants and made thousands more ill.

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