“We care about our responsibility to provide good nutrition, especially for the most vulnerable in society—children, the elderly and those struggling with illness ... Our people are fully committed and are working tirelessly to ensure that supply is maintained.”
The company noted it has implemented enhanced safety measures at all sites, with particular focus on workers in Nestlé factories, quality labs and distribution centers. It’s also offering free meals and transport for staff to help reduce the risk they get sick with the coronavirus.
“In addition, we have put in place generous sick leave arrangements for those who contract the virus and will provide cash loans or advances for those in financial distress. All hourly and salaried staff affected by temporary stoppages will be paid in full for a minimum of 12 weeks,” (depending on local labor laws and regulations).
Nestlé also said it continues to lead local relief efforts in the communities around the globe where it operates.
“We have provided support to charities, medical institutions and other organizations in the frontline of the fight against this pandemic. We have worked very closely with physicians to develop new tailored COVID-19 medical nutrition and supplement treatment protocols. We have also donated to food banks and food delivery organizations to support people in need. And we are providing prompt and pragmatic support to our business partners, for example in our supply chains, who are affected by this crisis. Our efforts are continuing—and stepping up—around the world.”
Partnership with IFRC
Building on these efforts, Nestlé said it has joined forces with the International Federation of the Red Cross (IFRC) and Red Crescent Societies in response to its emergency appeal. The Red Cross and Nestlé were both established over a century ago.
“We have common roots in Switzerland and are present in almost every country in the world. We share common values, including a determination to make a difference on the ground. As part of the emergency response, the IFRC is providing immediate help to strengthen health care systems, where the need is greatest,” Nestlé’s statement said.
The company noted four ways it will work together initially to provide help for emergency services and caregivers and strengthen healthcare systems.
1) Donation of food, medical nutrition products and bottled water to bring relief to those most affected by the pandemic.
2) Deploying available logistics capacities from its out-of-home business to support the needs of the IFRC in various countries.
3) Donation of CHF 10 million for immediate deployment in countries where it is most needed.
4) And the company will match 1:1 any donations to the Red Cross and Red Crescent National Societies or Federation made by Nestlé’s employees.
“Now is the time to demonstrate the values of the Nestlé family,” said Mark Schneider, CEO of Nestlé. “I am deeply impressed and humbled by what our team has accomplished in order to support individuals and communities affected by this crisis. The COVID-19 pandemic is a global problem and consequently we are offering help on the ground everywhere, drawing on our extensive presence and experience in 187 countries. In addition, we give our full support to those who are fighting tirelessly against the spread of the virus, every day. This is where our trusted and longstanding partnership with the IFRC comes in. We applaud the relentless efforts of the millions of Red Cross and Red Crescent volunteers and admire their determination to make a difference on the ground.”