Sweet Politics

Nestlé campaigns on energy reforms and cocoa sourcing

By Oliver Nieburg

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Nestlé cocoa plan Cocoa supply chain Nestlé

Nestlé has campaigned on proposed legislation to give tax credits to firms using waste-to-energy technology
Nestlé has campaigned on proposed legislation to give tax credits to firms using waste-to-energy technology
Nestlé has spent more than any other confectioner on lobbying in the US this year and has focused its efforts on waste-to-energy legislation and cocoa sourcing in West Africa.

The company has devoted $1.4m this year on campaigning in the US, according to data compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics. See HERE.

Waste-to-Energy Technology Act

Its most frequently lobbied bill has been The Waste-to-Energy Technology Act​ of 2011. The bill concerns investment tax credits for companies using waste-to-energy facilities. The bill was referred to Committee in January 2011, but it has yet to report back.

The specific issues companies lobby for within proposed legislation are unavailable on public record and therefore it is unclear what Nestlé's stance and focus on the bill is.

ConfectioneryNews.com did asked Nestlé for insight on this, but the company was unable to contact the relevant personnel amid the devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy and subsequent storms along the east coast of the U.S.

Food Safety Modernization Act

Nestlé has also lobbied on the Food Safety Modernization Act regarding food safety, packaging and measures.

The Act, which shifts the focus from responding to contamination to preventing it, was passed into law in January 2011.

Some food producers have raised concerns about implementing provisions in the Act and the National Confections Association, of which Nestlé is a member, also spoke out over ‘uncertain’ deadlines for enforcement. See HERE.

Influential lobbyists

Of the 12 lobbyists used by Nestlé in 2012, 10 have previously held government jobs.

For example, Randall Gerard of lobbying firm Podesta Group has campaigned on Nestlé’s behalf and also previously held a Federal government position in the Senate Commerce, Science, & Transportation Committee.

Cocoa sourcing

The Nestlé lobbying fund has also extended to cocoa growing in West Africa under the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management (FARRM) Act and money was also devoted to lobbying the Child Labor Cocoa Coordinating Group that reports on the progress towards reduction of child labor on cocoa farms in West Africa.

Nestlé recently allowed a probe of its cocoa supply chain from the Fair Labor Association (FLA), which found multiple child labor violations on farms in West Africa supplying Nestlé’s factories.

The company has pledged to step-up its efforts to eradicate the worst forms of child labor under the Nestlé Cocoa Plan​, the firm’s sustainable cocoa project.

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