Mr Brabeck-Letmathe & our activist at the AGM.

Originally posted by Laura on April 27, 2010 9:21 AM

Good question. After dropping into Nestlé's Annual General Meeting on April 15th to deliver the message that the largest food and drink company in the world is still using palm oil and paper products from forest destruction - we got a response.

Chairman Peter Brabeck-Letmathe painted a very reassuring picture of what Nestlé is doing (or not doing) to address the products in it's supply chains which come from destroyed forests. His statement has been prominently displayed on the Nestlé homepage since the AGM where our activists at the meeting - and all of you supporting the campaign online - ensured that palm oil was a main focus of the agenda.

Brabeck yet again proclaims Nestlé's concern and commitment to protecting rainforests and peatlands in Indonesia - and yet again - doesn't announce any action that would go far enough to save them. (For a more detailed point-by-point explanation of Mr Brabeck's response click here.)

In his statement Mr Brabeck tries to shift most of the blame onto the biofuels industry - another user of palm oil - but just because biofuels is another increasing threat to rainforests does not mean Nestlé can continue to ignore it's own contribution to the problem. Although Nestlé has canceled direct contracts with Indonesian palm oil supplier - and forest destroyer - Sinar Mas it continues to use palm oil and other products from Sinar Mas via third party suppliers such as Cargill.

Brabeck addresses Cargill specifically in his statement, saying that Nestlé has sought 'assurances' about its palm oil supplies - "Cargill has informed us that Sinar Mas needs to answer Greenpeace’s allegations by the end of April. They have indicated that they will delist Sinar Mas if they do not take corrective action by then." There are only three days left in April.

If Cargill misses this deadline, or does not delist Sinar Mas as expected, what will Nestlé do? Cargill cannot claim that Sinar Mas is not involved in forest and peatland destruction in Indonesia. Even as I write we have fresh evidence that Sinar Mas subsidiary PT BAT is clearing rainforest bordering orang-utan habitat in Central Kalimantan.

What is the largest food and drink company in the world to do? Let's ask them.

Tweet a question to @Nestle.

Fill out their customer service form.

Or get your question to them another way.

Ask Nestlé what it will do if Cargill does not confirm by end of this week that it will drop Sinar Mas - despite fresh evidence of forest destruction. For more on our latest evidence click here.

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