Improve workers’ livelihoods and protect children in our agricultural supply chain
Protecting children and workers
Labor rights are at the core of many of our salient issues, and we’re implementing wide-ranging programs to ensure good conditions for workers in our supply chain.
Why it matters
Nestlé opposes all forms of human rights violations, including labor rights violations. Labor rights are included in seven of our 11 salient issues and are associated with our agricultural supply chains.
Labor issues are an essential part of our human rights work, and we’re implementing programs that deal with the most pressing problems that we face in our supply chains. This includes working with organizations like the Fair Labor Association (FLA) and the Danish Institute for Human Rights (DIHR) to independently assess our impact. In 2017, we published our first report on child labor, Tackling Child Labour (pdf, 5Mb). In 2018, we have been building on this work.
What we are doing
We’re dedicated to making steady progress on protecting children and workers in our supply chains.
Start reporting on the number of workers in agricultural supply chains having benefited from our interventions on selected salient labor rights issues.
Our result: Work is currently underway, and we aim to start reporting once we have reviewed interventions against the list of salient issues.
Start reporting on the number of workers in agricultural supply chains having benefited from our interventions on all salient labor rights issues.
We’re tackling child labor across our supply chains
We are tackling child labor across our agricultural supply chains, with a range of initiatives designed to address the particular concerns of each community. In our cocoa supply chain, we have established our Child Labor Monitoring and Remediation System. For sugar, we are running several initiatives to tackle child labor in different countries we source from.
In 2018, we completed a pilot of the US Department of Agriculture’s Guidelines for Eliminating Child and Forced Labor in Agricultural Supply Chains, a collaboration with the FLA, Turkish government agencies and our two hazelnut suppliers in the Black Sea region of Turkey, Olam and Balsu.
Working together, we identified the risks of child labor and forced labor in the hazelnut supply chain, which relies on tens of thousands of seasonal migrant workers. We then strengthened our capacity to address these risks. In June 2018, the FLA published a report on the project (pdf, 2Mb).
During the pilot, we learned that:
1. Collaboration is fundamental to achieving the maximum impact. By working with farmers, suppliers, labor contractors, local and national government, and NGOs, we were able to achieve the best results.
2. Data is key. Gathering robust data on worker demographics, migrant workers’ movements and workplace conditions enabled us to develop a clear picture of the issue and design remediation.
3. Understanding workers’ needs is crucial. Each workforce faces different issues, and it’s essential to communicate effectively with workers to understand the issues they face and develop systems that protect them.
4. Flexibility makes a big difference. Risk needs to be assessed continually, considering the shifting needs of the local environment and the possibility to improve process.
Piloting these guidelines has demonstrated how effective they are. They’re practical, and one of their greatest strengths is that they can be used by everybody from small, agricultural firms to large multinational companies.