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Brazil: Nestlé has been reducing food voucher benefits and share of profits during the Covid-19 pandemic, state local unions

“Nestlé attacks food benefits of Brazilian workers during the pandemic”, 02 April 2021

...At its chocolate factory in Vila Velha (one of its 31 Brazilian units) in Espírito Santo…[,]...the company plans to halve food voucher benefits…[,]...having already reduced the share of profits passed on to workers...“That this should happen during the Covid-19 pandemic situation is really outrageous. We will resist and even go on strike, if necessary,” says Linda Morais, the local union president...The announcement came at a time of decent results for Nestlé in Brazil: 2020 sales increased by 5.7% compared to 2019 (in Brazilian Reais), according to the company’s latest annual report...Two chocolate and milk product units in Feira de Santana, in the state of Bahia in the northeast of the country, were also affected. Last November, the company reduced profit sharing and halved the food ticket value for more than 600 employees...In Brazil, food aid, given in the form of tickets that employees can exchange for products in supermarkets, is not mandatory, but it is usually offered by companies...In practice, it supplements a worker’s salary and can be a lifeline for low wage workers…[T]he price of rice and beans, which make up the staple diet of most Brazilians, rose 76% and 45% respectively in 2020...Other essential products...have also risen in recent months...According to union members, the cutting of food benefits first began in São Paulo, where the company has half of its workforce...