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PostPosted: Fri May 26, 2006 11:37 am 
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Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2005 6:48 pm
Posts: 614
Location: Ontario, Canada / Cambridge, UK
I've been boycotting all products from which Nestle profits for over 10 years now... for a variety of ethical reasons I won't get into here because they are not allergy-related. My previous work experience (for an international child rights organization) includes 5 years of "battling" Nestle and their deceptive and aggressive marketing tactics... so no, I don't trust them one bit!

_________________
16-year-old son: peanuts, nuts, raw egg whites, asthmatic
Self: allergic rhinitis, fragrance/chemical sensitivities, oral allergy syndrome


Last edited by Storm on Sun May 28, 2006 1:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri May 26, 2006 12:18 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 20, 2006 3:03 pm
Posts: 105
Location: Coquitlam
Storm,

AnnaMarie basically said it all.

On Quaker boxes it states "Peanut Free" on the Dare Bear Paws It states "Peanut Free". I feel your allowing your anger from the past to get in the way with your judgement of this recall. I know how you feel I have been dealing with a large corporation for the past 8 years on an extremely personal level and it is not fun at all. However I do need to step back every so often and look at things from a different perspective or I would totally lose my mind.

I do feel that Nestle has done all that could have been done. It was only the one incident (Thank Goodness) and Nestle did not have to pull the items off the shelves until testing was completed and confirmed but they did.

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PostPosted: Fri May 26, 2006 1:28 pm 
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Joined: Sat Apr 16, 2005 12:09 am
Posts: 1054
AnnaMarie wrote:
But, what about Chapmans? Quaker? and any other company that manufacturers food. Can you trust any of them?

This is a good point about "trusting" manufacturers. I think as people who are dealing with life threatening allergies we rely heavily on the information that manufacturers tell us about their products and we "trust" that they are being forthcoming with the information. If you didn't hold some amount of trust -- you could drive yourself mad with the "what if" questions. I've grappled with this some in the past and brought up the topic in another thread. For example, many people state that they would not eat products made in a facility that processes foods containing peanuts/nuts for fear of cross-contam. but yet, when these same people call a company to inquire about a product's possibility of being cross-contam. with peanuts/nuts, they accept the "yes" or "no" answer provided to them and stop there with their questions. How do we as consumers know what a manufacturer considers cross-contam.? Made on the same line as a peanut/nut containing food? Made in a facility where peanuts/nuts are present? (Does the CFIA even have published rules on what denotes "cross-contam"?) My point is, we "trust" manufacturers a great deal and we don't have any other choice outside of not consuming their product. I think we as consumers need to ask questions, lots of them, and make informed decisions that we can live with. As Karen stated in another thread -- the manufacturing of food is a great topic to explore further. Maybe with concrete information about the rules that manufacturers must adhere to (and lack of rules for that matter) and the processes that are in place to keep food safe -- "trusting" them will be based on information and less on "hope". As well -- knowing where improvements are needed allows for people like us to lobby for change.


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PostPosted: Fri May 26, 2006 3:18 pm 
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Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2005 6:48 pm
Posts: 614
Location: Ontario, Canada / Cambridge, UK
Sil, I don't have a "judgement" about the recall. I never criticized the process. My point is that the wording in their official communication is wrong and shows their lack of awareness about allergies. They claim that some of their chocolate bars are peanut AND nut free but judging from this wording ("nut free facility" as opposed to the more correct "peanut/nut-free facility"), it doesn't seem like they fully understand allergies and the difference between nuts and peanuts. To me, that doesn't inspire trust, regardless of whether I had it to begin with.

Quaker bars do not claim to be both peanut and nut free... only peanut free. I have no problem with this. Dare paws make it clear on their labelling that they are manufactured in a peanut and nut free facility, even though the symbol on the front of the box is of a peanut.

What you erroneously call "anger", I call "awareness". Boycotting Nestle is my personal choice but I don't have a personal vendetta against Nestle. My choice is not based on anger or negative past experiences... it is based on facts and information, pure and simple. I am perfectly capable of being objective. In fact, I have never raised any of the issues and concerns I have with Nestle in this forum and respect people's decisions to purchase their products (if that's not looking at it from a different perspective I don't know what is). However, I do feel as though I have the right to express an opinion on the wording of their latest statement without being accused of being biased or blinded by anger.

_________________
16-year-old son: peanuts, nuts, raw egg whites, asthmatic
Self: allergic rhinitis, fragrance/chemical sensitivities, oral allergy syndrome


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PostPosted: Sat May 27, 2006 2:49 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2005 9:38 pm
Posts: 1643
Location: Toronto
Storm, I appreciate that you did explain your feelings about Nestle. I also appreciate that you are not trying to turn this thread into a major political debate.

As for Nestle's allergy awareness, I base my opinion on more then one press release. I've been calling companies for a lot of years. And as ethansmom suggested, I don't just ask their opinion of whether or not the product is safe. I ask very detailed questions - the question vary depending on the answers I receive.

I have also received information from a parent on an allergy board that does contract work going into companies - Nestle being one of them - and he has explained some things that he saw there. And, my husband also goes into different manufacturing companies - again, Nestle being one of them - and he has told me what he saw there.

All of these things combined have led to me trusting Nestle.

And, it was one of the first companies I did trust.


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PostPosted: Sun May 28, 2006 8:52 am 
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Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2005 6:48 pm
Posts: 614
Location: Ontario, Canada / Cambridge, UK
AnnaMarie,

Thanks for your post. I think it's great when people find a company they can trust and I respect your decision. Consumers are very loyal to their brands. Just a few comments (and please be assured that my goal is not to "convert" anyone to my choice to boycott but I am merely expressing some of the reasons why I do not trust Nestle... and my opinion is based on more than one press release. I'll keep it allergy-related.)

About 5 years ago, Nestle decided to stop manufacturing their five peanut/nut-free chocolate bars (Smarties, Kit Kat, Aero, Coffee Crisp and Mirage) because they wanted to expand their factory to include bars containing nuts and peanuts and respond to consumer demands for more nut and peanut products (these two reasons have been stated by Nestle) . This implies two things: that Nestle no longer cared about the segment of the population with allergies and that this decision was based solely on making more money. Nestle sales total almost 100 billion worldwide... did they really need to "drop" their nut/peanut-free products?

They planned to do this over a period of time and advised all the major allergy groups to help spread the word. The decision to stop manufacturing the nut/peanut-free bars caused an outrage and many consumers and allergy groups expressed their disappointment. There were even stories about it in the press. They eventually reversed their decision. They called this program "Safe to Share" and had this logo on their packaging. The wording of this logo did not please many allergy groups as they did not approve of the blanket message telling allergic kids that it is indeed "safe to share" any of their food. Nestle then dropped the "safe to share" wording and changed the logo to a symbol. These are all facts.

Another comment (not based on fact but on some opinions) is that Nestle never had the intention of stopping the production of their peanut and nut-free chocolate bars... that this was a clever marketing tactic to use allergy groups, allergic consumers and the press to provide free publicity for the renewed marketing of their peanut/nut-free chocolates.

My point is this... if Nestle is indeed an allergy-aware company, they have not proved it to me yet. They would do well to follow Dare's example and work closely with allergy groups so they can provide an accurate and consistent message to the allergic population. As people who live with allergies, we all know how important wording, lists of ingredients and allergy warnings are. These need to be clear and concise.

I also want to make it clear that the points I have made above (allergy-related ones) are not the reason I have been boycotting Nestle for over 10 years but they are contributing factors as to why I do not trust this company. The reasons for the boycott are a lot more complex and the whole issue goes back over 30 years. Anyone who wants more info on the Nestle Boycott can google those two words and read some of the hundreds of thousands of websites on the matter.

_________________
16-year-old son: peanuts, nuts, raw egg whites, asthmatic
Self: allergic rhinitis, fragrance/chemical sensitivities, oral allergy syndrome


Last edited by Storm on Mon May 29, 2006 12:22 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sun May 28, 2006 11:26 am 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 6:53 pm
Posts: 1454
Location: Canada
I agree, Storm, with most of your posts. (And for people who are interestd, earlier on this thread I provide a link to some articles about Nestle and non-PA related political issues.)

My take on the "accident"---elsewhere (on another allergy board), the woman whose daughter had the initial reaction indicated that peanut protein was found in *wrapped* chocolate bars. The concentration of peanut protein was very, very small--but evidently it was enough to cause a contact reaction. The outside of the wrapper would not have been contaminated outside of the plant because those snack size bars come in their own sealed plastic bag, right? So something did happen at the plant, but one would never ever guess that from Nestle's carefully written communication to the allergy community. Maybe a worker had had peanuts for lunch or something and didn't wash his/her hands? I believe them more or less when they say that it was an isolated incident...I just don't like the way it was handled.


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PostPosted: Tue May 30, 2006 11:49 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 20, 2006 3:03 pm
Posts: 105
Location: Coquitlam
Storm wrote:
Quote:
My point is that the wording in their official communication is wrong and shows their lack of awareness about allergies. They claim that some of their chocolate bars are peanut AND nut free but judging from this wording ("nut free facility" as opposed to the more correct "peanut/nut-free facility"), it doesn't seem like they fully understand allergies and the difference between nuts and peanuts. To me, that doesn't inspire trust, regardless of whether I had it to begin with.

I'm sorry Storm but do you honestly think that it was Nestle that wrote the press release? I think not. It was most likely written by one employee in the communications department along with a lawyer. ( I definitely can't see a lawyer being an expert on allergies)
Most of the people on this forum understand the difference between peanuts and tree nuts because we live with it on a daily basis but the general public do not. They lump them all up together, they have no idea that a peanut is a legume and not a nut.

Storm also wrote:
Quote:
Another comment (not based on fact but on some opinions) is that Nestle never had the intention of stopping the production of their peanut and nut-free chocolate bars... that this was a clever marketing tactic to use allergy groups, allergic consumers and the press to provide free publicity for the renewed marketing of their peanut/nut-free chocolates
.
Does it really matter whether or not it was a marketing ploy? Because of what Nestle has done in regards of making the general public aware of allergies/anaphylaxis. I believe to be a step in the right direction. Nestle has opened the eyes of many other manufacturers such as "Dare" and "Quaker" who have also jumped on the band wagon of profit. I hate to tell you but Yes! Dare and Quaker are also making these products not for us but for money.

I am not on anyone's side. I am merely a consumer that appreciates the opportunity to purchase peanut/nut free products.

Yes, Boycotting Nestle is your personal choice and that is fine with me. I was simply trying to point out that whether the press release was worded "peanut/nut free" or "nut free facility" does not change anything. I would rather put my "energy" into something that would make a bigger difference. Like Education.

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Sil


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PostPosted: Tue May 30, 2006 2:02 pm 
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Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2005 6:48 pm
Posts: 614
Location: Ontario, Canada / Cambridge, UK
Sil wrote:
I'm sorry Storm but do you honestly think that it was Nestle that wrote the press release? I think not. It was most likely written by one employee in the communications department along with a lawyer. ( I definitely can't see a lawyer being an expert on allergies).


The employee in the communications department works for Nestle... and represents Nestle...so yes, Nestle DID write the response (note that it was NOT a press release, which was one of my points in the first place). In fact, anyone who works in the communications department of ANY company does in fact represent that company. It is also important for any employee of a communications department to fully understand what the company they work for actually does... And this applies not only to Communications personnel but to all personnel. Even communications written by or with the counsel of a lawyer still need to be approved by high-level management, as any statement or letter issued by the company does indeed represent that company.

sil wrote:
I would rather put my "energy" into something that would make a bigger difference. Like Education.


I'm going to ignore your sarcastic comment... but I will tell you this: proper wording and knowing the difference between a peanut and a nut are all part of EDUCATION. And whether we like it or not, it's the big conglomerates out there that have the means and power to disseminate messages (even erroneous ones). And for the record, EVERYTHING makes a difference.... each and every drop in the bucket. If you choose not to care about this it is your choice, but do not make deprecating and judgemental statements that undermine what I choose to advocate.

_________________
16-year-old son: peanuts, nuts, raw egg whites, asthmatic
Self: allergic rhinitis, fragrance/chemical sensitivities, oral allergy syndrome


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 30, 2006 2:45 pm 
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Joined: Sat Apr 16, 2005 12:09 am
Posts: 1054
Sil wrote:
I'm sorry Storm but do you honestly think that it was Nestle that wrote the press release? I think not. It was most likely written by one employee in the communications department along with a lawyer. ( I definitely can't see a lawyer being an expert on allergies)
Most of the people on this forum understand the difference between peanuts and tree nuts because we live with it on a daily basis but the general public do not. They lump them all up together, they have no idea that a peanut is a legume and not a nut.

I tend to agree with you Storm -- I recognize that the general public might not know the difference between a peanut and a tree nut and I don't necessarily expect them to. However, if you are a company that is targeting a need in the market for those who are allergic to peanuts and tree nuts and others who are "allergy aware", then yes, you have an obligation to educate yourself as a company. You also have an obligation to ensure that all of your representatives (lawyers included) understand your mandate so that you can best serve the segment of the population you are targeting. I agree life is being able to look at the "big picture" but it is also in the fine details -- and when you as an "allergy aware" company, do not distinguish between a peanut and a tree nut, you perpetuate misinformation. I appreciate it when companies decide to make "allergy aware" products and take steps to see that the allergic community is considered -- I let them know about my appreciation too! But I also think that if you decide to take on the task of being an "allergy aware" company, you must also pay close attention to the small things such as a press release, because as people dealing with LTA, our safety (and lives!) depend on others paying close attention to all of the small details.


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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 2:31 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 20, 2006 3:03 pm
Posts: 105
Location: Coquitlam
storm wrote:
Quote:
Even communications written by or with the counsel of a lawyer still need to be approved by high-level management, as any statement or letter issued by the company does indeed represent that company

Could it be possible that this individual in Nestle communications believes they know about allergies. I'm not sure how you expect high level management that do not know the difference in regards to allergies to catch onto this mistake. (Perhaps management also believes that this individual is allergy aware.)

I like the term "to err is human" and "we learn from our mistakes" I know I have made mistakes in the past and I can guarantee that I will continue to make mistakes. So I always allow leeway for mistakes in everyone. Yes, even corporations with employee's who make mistakes.

storm wrote:
Quote:
If you choose not to care about this it is your choice, but do not make deprecating and judgemental statements that undermine what I choose to advocate.

I never stated that I don't care. In Fact I do very much so. But rather than get upset I would call the company and point out their mistake. I would not hold it against them. I prefer to forgive and forget and then move on with life.
Why is that you do not like it when people "deprecate and judge your statements" But you are willing to do it to others. Including Nestle.?

Quote:
Similarly, the CFIA toured our nut-free production facility, reviewed our processes and found no issues of concern.

I'm not sure what else you are wanting from the company.
storm wrote:
Quote:
each and every drop in the bucket.

But then again after a statement like this. I think I can figure out what you want.

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Sil


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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 4:21 am 
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Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2005 6:48 pm
Posts: 614
Location: Ontario, Canada / Cambridge, UK
Sil wrote:
Could it be possible that this individual in Nestle communications believes they know about allergies. I'm not sure how you expect high level management that do not know the difference in regards to allergies to catch onto this mistake. (Perhaps management also believes that this individual is allergy aware.)


That's precisely my point. A company that manufactures and sells allergy-free products NEEDS to know all the facts about allergies. This includes all employees, especially high-level management. Nestle surely has the funds to offer an allergy trainining programme to their employees.

Sil wrote:
I would not hold it against them. I prefer to forgive and forget and then move on with life.


One can move on with life... but not necessarily "forget". You keep insisting that my point is based on anger and emotion by implying that there is something to forgive.. There is nothing to forgive... the issues and facts speak for themselves. If no one ever protested or voiced an opinion, companies would be getting away with so much more, particularly Nestle. I recommend you do some background research on Nestle or even watch the documentary The Corporation: http://www.thecorporation.com/index.php?page_id=2

Sil wrote:
Why is that you do not like it when people "deprecate and judge your statements" But you are willing to do it to others. Including Nestle.?


Please do not generalize this. I was referring to the sarcastic comments YOU made, which really serve no purpose other than to belittle the issue I have raised. I do not make sarcastic comments or offer cliched tidbits of "Dear Abby-esque" advice to Nestle. I base my concerns and criticisms on fact.

Storm wrote:
each and every drop in the bucket.
Sil wrote:
But then again after a statement like this. I think I can figure out what you want.


Sorry but I really have no idea what you are alluding to by yet another of your sarcastic comments. My point was that each and every drop in the bucket fills the bucket with water. In other words, every little contribution, comment, etc are all part of the bigger picture... and will ultimately make a difference. I was not speaking in financial terms. In case I have not made it clear just what it is that I "want" from Nestle... I'll state it again. For this particular issue, I want them to be better informed about allergies and communicate accurate information about allergies to their consumers by using proper wording and terms. I have made it clear in my previous postings in this thread that I do not have a personal vendetta against Nestle, that my reasons to boycott have nothing to do with this particular issue and that I respect people's decision to buy Nestle products. I have also made it clear that I am not criticizing the process of the recall.

I'm going to stop engaging in this debate with you because you are going to continue to pick apart everything I write, take it out of context and misconstrue my words. It is obvious that you want your opinion to be the right one and can't respect my point of view because you are so convinced it is wrong and can't accept that there are people out there who think and do things differently from you. I'm not asking anyone to accept my point of view, just respect it, as I do theirs. I'm not expecting everyone to agree with me but I do expect some form of healthy debate, which apparently you are unable to do.

_________________
16-year-old son: peanuts, nuts, raw egg whites, asthmatic
Self: allergic rhinitis, fragrance/chemical sensitivities, oral allergy syndrome


Last edited by Storm on Wed May 31, 2006 3:21 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 8:44 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 20, 2006 3:03 pm
Posts: 105
Location: Coquitlam
storm writes:
Quote:
because you are going to continue to pick apart everything I write


Hmm..... would this be what was being done to Nestle? :?

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Sil


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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2006 9:52 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2005 11:39 pm
Posts: 1141
Location: saskatchewan, canada
Sil,

Storm can have an opinion here even if it is not your opinion.

This is not the first time you have picked apart someones posts and argued on and on. Yes, some people have different ideas and opinions than you do. That does not mean you need to belittle and pick apart everything they write.

I know when you picked me apart for choosing to homeschool my kids it changed my feelings about this forum. It was no longer a place to comfortably share my ideas and experiences. I certainly do not post anything else here about homeschooling because I do not feel like entering into another "debate" as you call it. Infact, I hardly post at all anymore, just basic stuff like new foods I've found. I too have opinions that are not always mainstream and yes, companies actions are fueled by their bottom line. I have better things to do than have unproductive, hostile discussions on-line.

I would like to see this forum once again be a place where we can actually share without being picked apart for being different people with different ideas and opinions.

Honestly, how fun is it to come here and have someone pick apart your posts. :D

_________________
DD age 9 1/2 -peanuts, nuts,
DD age 7 1/2 - milk, eggs, chicken, peanuts, treenuts, cats, dogs,
DS age 2 1/2
Husband- asthma, eggs, treenuts, fish, shellfish environmental
Self - penicillan, eurithromiacin, mild laytex allergy.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 01, 2006 12:00 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2005 4:04 pm
Posts: 2044
Location: Gatineau, Quebec
I agree that there is room here for everyone's opinion, and I would like this debate to end right now.

Thanks.

K.

_________________
Karen, proud Mom of
- DS1 (12 yrs): allergic to cashews, pistachios, Brazil nuts, potatoes, some legumes, some fish, pumpkin seeds; OAS
- DS2 (1o yrs): ana. to dairy, eggs, peanuts; asthma


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