Friday, July 8, 2022

Fonterra crisis: Fonterra suspends operations in Sri Lanka

Fonterra Co-operative Group says it has suspended its consumer operations in Sri Lanka, where sales of its products have been temporarily banned from sale, because of protests outside its offices.

The company’s Sri Lanka business was prevented by a court order from selling, advertising or making public statement with customers or consumers, Fonterra said.

The company has begun legal action to resolve the order.

Its operations had been closed because of the unstable situation at the moment, it said.

“The temporary suspension is the right thing to do,” chief executive Theo Spierings said. “It is a precautionary measure to ensure our 755 people working there are safe. We have closed our plants and office in Sri Lanka and have asked our people to stay at home.”

“The temporary suspension is the right thing to do."

Theo Spierings

Spierings said his company must do all it could to protect its farmer shareholders’ investment in Fonterra’s Sri Lanka manufacturing and commercial operations.

Fonterra had provided every possible assurance to Sri Lankan authorities about the safety and quality of Fonterra’s products and remained committed to the Sri Lankan people, he said.“Recent events, however, have made it difficult to maintain day-to-day operations and we need to get them resolved.”

Last week a Sri Lankan court imposed a 14-day temporary ban on Fonterra selling products in that country amid claims they contained traces of a nitrate inhibitor.

Three workers representing Sri Lanka’s National Health Services Union won a temporary injunction to stop the Auckland-based company selling its products in Sri Lanka.

 ©BusinessDesk 2013

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