Source: 恒星英语学习网  Onion  2009-05-10  我要投稿   论坛   Favorite  

It was an easy prediction to make: that the recession would end talk of corporate social responsibility. Faced with the fear, or reality, of losing their jobs or homes, consumers would rush past the Fairtrade shelves and pick up something the family could afford. Companies, meanwhile, would concentrate on saving themselves rather than the planet.

That easy prediction has turned out to be wrong. Mars, the world's biggest confectionery company, has announced that its entire cocoa supply will be “produced in a sustainable manner” by 2020. Mars will work largely with the Rainforest Alliance, which encourages farmers to preserve their environment.
这个简单的预测已经被证明是错误的。全球最大的糖果公司玛氏(Mars)宣布,到2020年前,该公司使用的所有可可豆都将来自以“可持续的方式生产”的供应源。玛氏将与雨林联盟(Rainforest Alliance)进行大量合作,该组织致力于鼓励农民保护其种植环境。

Mars's move follows the announcement last month by Cadbury, the UK confectionery group, that all the cocoa in Dairy Milk, Britain's biggest-selling chocolate, would be certified by Fairtrade, the organisation that works to ensure a minimum price for farmers.
此前,3月份时英国糖果集团吉百利(Cadbury)宣布称, 英国最畅销的巧克力——吉百利牛奶巧克力(Dairy Milk)中采用的所有可可豆将会得到公平贸易组织的认证。该组织旨在确保农民获得的收购价格有一个最低限制。

The two chocolate makers were preceded by Wal-Mart, the world's biggest retailer, which told a meeting of 1,000 Chinese suppliers last year that it would hold them to strict environmental and social standards, the downturn notwithstanding.

Why are these companies acting in a way few expected? First, there are substantial business reasons. When Mars and Cadbury talk about their cocoa supplies being sustainable, they mean it. Chocolate manufacturers are worried about how much cocoa will be available a decade from now.

Worldwide cocoa production fell in 2008 for the fourth successive year. Cadbury says it is worried about how few cocoa farmers' children intend to go into the business. It is hoping the investment in farms that Fairtrade encourages will persuade them cocoa farming is a worthwhile occupation.

Wal-Mart also has commercial reasons for its stance. The company has been encouraging companies to cut down on packaging. This enables it to fit more goods into each delivery truck, not only reducing its emissions, but also cutting the amount it spends on petrol. Its insistence that manufacturers produce concentrated laundry detergent has allowed it to save on both packaging and shelf space. Cost-cutting is vital to beating the downturn and if companies can boost their green credentials at the same time, why not?

But the companies go further. Not only do their announcements make business sense, they say; consumers, even now, insist on them. Fiona Dawson, Mars UK's managing director, says customers expect the company to “do the right thing”, adding that “nobody has to buy confectionery”.
但这些企业又更进一步。它们表示,它们所宣布的举措不仅仅具有商业意义;此时甚至连消费者也开始坚持要求它们这么做了。玛氏英国分公司董事总经理菲奥娜·道森(Fiona Dawson)表示,顾客希望公司“做出正确之举”,并补充说,“没有人必须得买糖果”。

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