Saturday, August 17, 2013

Nestlé Sucking Life From The Planet

Last month, Nestlé tried to patent a flower used by billions of people as a natural remedy and a video was widely shared with Nestle’s chairman saying that water is a commodity and not a human right. And now, we have discovered that Nestlé is sucking a Canadian community dry during drought conditions — just to sell bottled water.

Nestlé has won a permit to drain the local aquifer dry at any time, while the community of Hillsburgh, Ontario has to restrict its water use during dry conditions every summer. This just isn’t right, and Maude Barlow, Council of Canadians, and Ecojustice are fighting back, taking Nestlé and Ontario Ministry of the Environment to court. However, it shouldn’t take a lawsuit for Nestlé to do the right thing. Lets tell Nestlé that community water access is more important than its profits. Demand Nestle to stop draining Hillsburgh’s water source during dry conditions for the sake of profits.

Currently, Nestlé has a permit through 2017 to take about 1.1 million litres of water per day from Hillsburgh for its bottling operations in Aberfoyle, even during drought conditions when households are put on water restrictions. A number of groups are fighting back. “Ontario must prioritize communities’ right to water above a private company’s thirst for profit,” says Maude Barlow, National Chairperson for the Council of Canadians.

Nestlé has been in the news a lot lately for attempting to profit from our natural resources. Last month, over a cure-all remedy for over a thousand years for billions of people in impoverished communities across the Middle East and Asia.

Several days after we send out our petition, a video emerged showed Nestlé’s chairperson claiming that the idea water is a human right comes from “extremist” NGOs and that water is a foodstuff that should have a market value. So it’s no surprise that Nestlé is now trying to drain water from an Ontario town for the sake of profit.

Nestlé’s appetite to commodify water and flowers is a recurring strategy by a corporation with a pattern of seeking to privatize and profit from traditional knowledge and our natural resources. By speaking out against the draining of our watersheds, you will be taking a stand against Nestlé’s evil strategy to commodifying everything in nature in the name of profit.


Whilst we may wish success to the people of Hillsburgh we won't hold our breath that Nestle - or any other mega-corporation - will back off from their perpetual search for more profits. That is their raison d'etre, enshrined in their corporate charters, to maximise profits for shareholders at whatever cost. Never mind externalities such as local people and the health of their environment. The real fight is not the one against Nestle but against the system that promotes and supports such egregious exploitation. CAPITALISM MUST GO!


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