Thursday, September 14, 2006

Buying In or Selling Out?

UC Berkeley's Dara O'Rourke (Professor of Environmental and Labor Policy) contributes an Op-Ed piece to the Stanford Social Innovation Review on how large multinational continue to gobble up socialy responsible companies.

I knew Unilver owned Ben & Jerry's. And I figured out from the "save this Box Top for your school" tag on my Cascadian Farms organic Honey Nut O's cereal that they were owned by General Mills. Didn't know General Mills also owns Muir Glen (tomatoes). I didn't know Coke owns Odwalla.

The latest acquisition: Colgate now owns Tom's of Maine.

Maybe I shouldn’t have ever believed in a toothpaste or a shampoo or an ice cream. I now realize I didn’t really know that much about Tom or Anita or Ben, anyway. I don’t know yet whether L’OrĂ©al is changing the Body Shop or vice versa, whether Tom is changing Colgate or being transformed. But I will now ask a lot more questions before I trust or believe in these companies again.

No comments: