Daily Media Briefing 22nd August

Daily Media Briefing

 

Posted in: Corporate Reputation, Daily Media Briefing, Employees, Environment, Supply Chain

Top Stories

August 22, 2012

Corporate Reputation

Corporations criticised for refusing to reveal what data they hold

A senior Cabinet minister in the UK has launched an attack on public bodies that have powers to carry out secret surveillance on members of the public but are refusing to say how they're using them. Under the controversial ‘Regulation of Investigative Powers Act’ (Ripa), a range of public bodies have the authority to demand that phone companies hand over records of calls, follow people without their knowledge and record their movements. These included the BBC, which is thought to use it for TV licensing infringement, the Prison Service, the Office of Fair Trading, the Royal Mail, UK Trade and Investment and the schools watchdog Ofsted. The BBC confirmed that TV Licensing did use Ripa but declined to give further details so as not to prejudice law enforcement. Ofsted and Royal Mail said they were aware of the report but declined to comment further. (The Independent)

Apple manufacturer Foxconn improves on Chinese workers' hours and safety

Foxconn, Apple's top manufacturer, has improved safety conditions and cut working hours in an effort to resolve violations at its plants that triggered a global scandal for the iPad and iPhone maker. The Taiwanese company submitted to an audit by an independent group, the Fair Labor Association (FLA), after reports of suicides and abusive conditions at several of its factories in China. The FLA said Foxconn had made significant improvements such as introducing more breaks and better maintenance of safety equipment. The company more than doubled wages after protests from worker groups and is backing a local law adjustment that will extend unemployment insurance. As well as being Apple's largest supplier Foxconn, which employs about a million people, makes products for Sony, Hewlett-Packard and Cisco Systems. (The Guardian)

Supply Chain

Global food companies ‘should upgrade sustainable supply chain strategies’

Only four of the world’s largest food producers – Danone, Heinz, PepsiCo and Unilever – have invested in wide-ranging codes of conduct to guide their suppliers’ environmental performance, according to a new report from Verdantix. Verdantix benchmarked the sustainable supply chain strategies of the 12 largest global food firms, with collective revenues of $390 billion, and found the other eight companies need to invest in environmental supply chain policies to anticipate non-governmental organisation scrutiny, better manage reputational risk, plan for resource scarcity and deal with competitive pressure. (Environment Leader)

Environment

Twelve large companies participate in low-carbon fleet test

Tesco, John Lewis Partnership and United Biscuits are among the 12 companies participating in a UK government-backed trial to test more than 300 low-carbon commercial vehicles. The Technology Strategy Board in partnership with the Department for Transport and the Office for Low Emission Vehicles today launched the £23 million ($36.3 million) demonstration program, which will receive more than £11 million ($17.3 million) in government support. Among the initiatives under the funding stream, United Biscuits will make renewable fuel for articulated vehicles with used cooking oil. The demonstration trial fleets will run for two years, during which time the Department for Transport will gather and analyse usage data. (Environment Leader)

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