Wake up and smell the coffee
Victoria Robinson

Statement from Institute of Risk Management/Anti-Slavery UK

Recent reports allege that Nestlé and Jacobs Douwe Egberts may have inadvertently used slave labour due to the source of unknown beans ending up in their coffee. It is reported that they do not know all of the names of plantations in their supply chain.

Dr Ian Livsey, Chief Executive of the Institute of Risk Management (IRM) comments:

“All businesses are under a legal obligation to be able to check and verify the robustness of their supply chains. It is imperative, especially given the recent launch of the recent Modern Slavery Act 2015, that businesses consider supply chain risks as part of their enterprise wide business models.

There is always scope for inappropriate behaviour where people and processes are involved and our stance is that these vulnerabilities should be considered as part of risk modelling to protect human rights as part of the overall risk management strategy“.

Dr Aidan McQuade, director of Anti-Slavery International, agreed and said:

“Nestle’s confirmation of forced labour being present in the production processes of its products looks to be indicating a growing tendency amongst businesses towards greater transparency in their supply chain.

It opens the possibility for greater collaboration between business, civil society and government to work together to confront the risks for businesses in relation to forced labour.

It feels like a good moment for such collaboration, with the Modern Slavery Act in the UK putting an obligation on businesses to report on what they do to tackle slavery in their supply chains. It will help them to work with organisations like ours to better understand the problem and help reduce the similar reports in the future.“

Both are available for interview, please contact:

Jakub Sobik, Press and Digital Media Manager, Anti-Slavery International: j.sobik@antislavery.org

M: +44(0) 7789 936 383

Victoria Robinson, Head of Communications at IRM: victoria.robinson@theirm.org

M:+44 (0)7469 353438

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