Words and actions: lessons from Unilever’s supply chain

Five years ago, Oxfam and Unilever agreed to an unusual collaboration. Oxfam conducted a study on labour rights in Unilever’s Vietnam supply chain and operations. Liesbeth Unger founder of Human Rights@Work, and adviser and co-writer of Oxfam’s previous Unilever report asks, why did Unilever do it? How did they perform? And what can other companies seeking to improve their labour …

Food justice and the ‘Big 10’ food and beverage companies

Over the past century, powerful food and beverage companies have enjoyed unprecedented commercial success. But these companies have grown prosperous while the millions who supply the land, labor and water needed for their products face increased hardship. Now, a rapidly changing environment, affected communities and an increasingly savvy consumer base are pushing the industry to rethink ‘business as usual’. In …

Food and beverage companies slowly start turning policy into practice

Oxfam launched its award-winning international ‘Behind the Brands’ campaign in February 2013. It ranks the biggest international food and beverage companies, the ‘Big 10’, on the strength of their policies on transparency, women, agricultural workers, farmers, land, water and climate change. The aim of the campaign is to create a race to the top, encouraging the Big 10 (Associated British …

The Coca-Cola/SABMiller value chain impacts in Zambia and El Salvador

This study is the result of a multi-year collaboration between The Coca-Cola Company, Oxfam America, and SABMiIIer to apply Oxfam’s Poverty Footprint methodology to the Coca-Cola/SABMiIIer value chain in Zambia and El Salvador. The methodology, which was originally developed and applied to Unilever’s operations in Indonesia, is designed to help companies understand and improve their poverty impacts. It is intended …

A case study of Unilever in Indonesia

The role of big business in poverty reduction cannot be overemphasized. This study looks at one of the corporate giants in Indonesia, Unilever, and examines its business activities for their impacts on the poor who along the line link with these activities either directly or indirectly. The study suggests the extent to which the wealth created by business can reduce …