Agriculture, Beverages & Food
Coca-Cola, the world's largest beverage producer, has been ordered to shut down its bottling plant in Varanasi, India following local complaints that the company was drawing excessive amounts of groundwater. After an investigation, government authorities ruled that the company had violated its operating license.
Royal Dutch Shell, the world's top marketer of biofuels, considers using food crops to make biofuels "morally inappropriate" as long as there are people in the world who are starving, an executive said on Thursday.
The main public investor in a controversial gas pipeline in Peru's Amazon rainforest that has ruptured four times already appears adamant not to bow to pressure from green groups demanding a full investigation after a study asserted that the pipeline is shoddily built and likely to break again.
In the summer of 1997, Tyrone Hayes, a biologist at the University of California, Berkeley, accepted what seemed a harmless offer to join a panel of eight other scientists investigating the safety of the common weed-killer atrazine. The panel had been commissioned by atrazine's inventor and primary manufacturer, the Swiss-based chemical giant then called Novartis and since renamed Syngenta. The company wanted to know if its product threatened "non-target" organisms, including fish, reptiles, and amphibians-creatures whose fate had remained largely unexplored through the half century in which atrazine had become the most heavily used herbicide in the United States as well as one of its most widespread environmental contaminants.
Associated British Foods (ABF), a UK company that makes Silver Spoon sugar, pays almost no taxes on its profitable Zambian sugar subsidiary, according to a new ActionAid report. The authors allege ABF has avoided estimated taxes of $27 million since 2007, enough to put 48,000 Zambian children in school.
Warren M. Anderson, chairman of the Union Carbide Corporation during the 1984 chemical disaster at Bhopal, India, has apparently gone into hiding to avoid a summons to appear in a Manhattan federal court as part of civil proceedings against him and the company, say lawyers who have hired a private investigator to locate Mr. Anderson.
CrocTail is an extension of the Crocodyl.org Wiki web site project, an online compendium profiling the accountability and transparency track records of multinational corporations. Developed with support from the Sunlight Foundation, CrocTail users can search the entire subsidiaries database. In this new version, users can click on different years and see how subsidiary relationships for a company have changed over time.
Shares in Philip Morris Cos. Inc. and other tobacco companies slipped on Thursday after a jury ordered the cigarette giant to pay a record $3 billion in damages to a smoker, but investors remained calm amid expectations the verdict will be overturned or reduced.