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NBR article:Fonterra’s ethics found wanting


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Adam has made the point in several of his posts in relation to Fonterra and San Lu that he is of the opinion that there was a governance failure within Fonterra.

Sample references are to Closing the Bamboo curtain‘, and Toxic Milk Powder incident is a moral and ethical failure, plus others. Governance is a common thread. illustrating how important it is.

This case provides a graphic illustration of why governance, to Adam, is not just a process, a mechanistic ticking off of boxes on a checklist, but must be based on shared values, organisational culture and above all moral and ethical behaviour.

Though in seeking to understand what happened, -it may well be the case that in this instance we have a situation where one set of values came up against another set of values, perhaps including a compelling set of cultural mores embedded in society which outweighed any others. Even if those at the top wish to change behaviours, behaviours may be so embedded that a very significant effort is required to achieve change.

Having said that, it is interesting to note that the lead story in the NBR print edition on Friday, 3 October was about how under Andrew Ferrier, Fonterra CEO, the previous ethics committee structure at Fonterra had been re-structured . Under the new structure the committee was no longer independent, a Fonterra executive chaired it, and the Committee Chair apparently no longer had the right of direct access to the board.

The article is well worth a look. fonterra_nbr031008

One Comment


  1. Are Fonterra’s ethics up to scratch? « Homepaddock

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