succumbing to peer pressure

Saturday, December 31, 2005

I suppose Emory won't be joining these ranks anytime soon...

The university [University of Michigan], which has 50,000 students on three campuses, on Thursday became the 10th college to stop selling Coca-Cola products because of concerns arising from accusations about the company's treatment of workers in bottling plants in Colombia and environmental problems in India.


Labor activists have said that Coca-Cola, through its Latin American bottlers, has been complicit in the deaths of eight union leaders and in continued harassment of unionized employees.

In India, a different group of activists have accused Coke of polluting the soil and groundwater near several bottling plants, of severely reducing groundwater levels in drought-prone areas and of failing to install adequate filtration systems that would remove pesticides from the water used to make its products.


Coke has denied all of the accusations. In April, the company announced the findings of a report by CSCC, a consulting firm in Los Angeles. The report, which was paid for by Coke, addressed current conditions, not the deaths, which occurred from 1989 to 2002. It found no violations or abuses of labor or human rights in Coke's bottling plants in Colombia.

Unsatisfied, the University of Michigan and five universities that still sell Coke products have called for an independent investigation of both the Colombia and India situations.


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