Blog: Kettle Chips boycott call misguided
Dean Best | 9 October 2007
Social networking sites are having a growing influence on the decision-makers at the world’s consumer goods companies.
From Mars using the likes of Bebo to market its confectionery to Cadbury Schweppes bringing back Wispa chocolate after a campaign on Facebook, the power of such sites is perceived to be growing as the number of users soars.
But how accurate is that perception? Today (9 October), the UK newspaper The Guardian reported that calls to boycott upmarket crisp brand Kettle Chips have sprung up on Facebook, amid recent claims that workers in the UK are being dissuading from joining a trade union.
Two groups have been formed on the Facebook site, which are calling for users to shun the brand. The groups – “Boycott Kettle Crisps for attacks on workers” and “Boycott Kettle Chips: the anti-Trade Union snack” – slam brand-owner Kettle Foods (itself owned by private equity firm Lion Capital) for “an assault upon [the] human rights” of the company’s UK workers.
Now, the groups’ ideals are perfectly laudable. But, do the members of the groups honestly believe that calling for a boycott on Facebook will hurt Kettle Foods enough financially – or cause them enough public embarrassment – to cause the company to change its mind?
And does the wider British public value being able to join a union highly enough to stop buying the product? It’s not as if Kettle Foods is using sweat shops in the Third World.
Danone completed its US$12.5bn acquisition of WhiteWave Foods this week. The move will roughly double Danone's presence in North America, where WhiteWave is a top four dairy player. ...
Premier Foods plc revealed today (28 March) it has secured a deal with its pension scheme trustees that will see the UK food maker reduce its pension burden....
Hain Celestial, under the scrutiny of the investment community in recent months and facing some challenges in its domestic market, has announced another shuffling of its management pack....
FrieslandCampina, which today served up higher profits but lower sales for 2016, is ready to offload the last non-dairy business owned by the Dutch cooperative giant....
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