George Weston Foods
One of Australia and New Zealand's largest food manufacturers, employing around 8,000 employees in close to 60 sites. George Weston Foods bought Tip Top Bakeries (1949), George Chapmans (1987), Don Smallgoods (1999), Melosi (1995), Jasol (1986), AGB (2007) and KR Castlemaine (2008).
|George Weston Foods Ltd||AUS||website|
| Associated British Foods PLC
owns 100% of George Weston Foods Ltd
| Wittington Investments Ltd
owns 55% of Associated British Foods PLC
| » Garfield Weston Foundation
owns 79% of Wittington Investments Ltd
|George Weston Foods Ltd|
Between 2013 and 2016 this company paid zero tax on a total income of $6.4 billion, earning the number 28 spot on Michael West's Top 40 Tax Dodgers [retrieved Aug 2018]. West calculated which of Australia's largest companies have paid the least tax, or no tax, on the highest incomes using three years of tax transparency data published by the Australian Tax Office.
[Source 2018][More on Finance]
Fined $50,000 in February 2012 after pleading guilty at Castlemaine Magistrates' Court to the offence of failing to provide a safe plant. A worker was injured by a smallgoods processing machine on July 20, 2010 and when investigated, it was revealed that the machine did not comply with Australian standards. The company has undertaken a full evaluation of its OHS standards on all its sites since the incident.
[Source 2012][More on Workers Rights]
This company has been criticised by CHOICE for refusing to place health star ratings on their products.
[Source 2015][More on Product Safety]
In Sept 2015 the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) accepted court enforceable undertakings from this company after investigations found that it had engaged in misleading conduct by labelling pork products as 'bred free range'. From 2008, some of KR Castlemaine's pork products were promoted as 'bred free range'. The pigs used for these pork products were in fact born outdoors but raised indoors to straw based shelters from the age of approximately 21 days.
[Source 2015][More on Governance]
Some of this company's Jasol cleaning products have received the Good Environmental Choice Ecolabel, provided by the Australian Environmental Labelling Association.
[Source 2016][More on Eco-Certification]
George Weston branded items were rated 'green' in Greenpeace's 2011 Truefood Guide, except for chicken products. This signifies a clear policy on excluding GM-derived ingredients, including oils derived from GM crops, and animal products from animals fed on GM crops. Chicken products may be fed GM grain.
[Source 2011][More on Genetic Engineering]
This company is a signatory to the Responsible Children's Marketing Initiative (RCMI), which is managed by the Australian Food & Grocery Council and covers products found in retail outlets. Companies that have signed up to the initiative commit to: only advertising healthier choices to children and encouraging a healthy lifestyle through good diet and physical activity; not paying for or seeking product placement television programs, editorial content or interactive games aimed at children, unless the product is a healthier choice; not advertising and marketing to children in Australian schools unless they are asked to by those schools.
[Source 2015][More on Irresponsible Marketing]
KR Castlemaine Fresh Bred Free-Range Pork is certified by the RSPCA Approved Farming Scheme. However this only represents a small percentage of this company's total pig meat production.
[Source 2011][More on Animal Rights]
|Associated British Foods PLC|
A 2015 investigation by the BBC has found workers on Indian tea plantations who pick tea for this company are paid less than £2 per day and live in inhuman conditions. Living and working conditions are so bad, and wages so low, that tea workers and their families are left malnourished and vulnerable to fatal illnesses. There was also a disregard for health and safety, with workers spraying chemicals without protection, and on some estates, child labour being used.
[Source 2015][More on Workers Rights]
This company received a score of 34.2/100 in the Newsweek Green Rankings 2016, which ranks the world's largest publicly traded companies on eight indicators covering energy, greenhouse gases, water, waste, fines and penalties, linking executive pay to sustainability targets, board-level committee oversight of environmental issues and third-party audits. Ranking methodology by Corporate Knights and HIP Investor.
[Source 2016][More on Sustainability Reporting]
In 2016 Rank a Brand assessed 37 major cotton-using companies on their commitment and performance with regard to sustainable cotton by looking at each company's cotton sourcing policies, use of sustainable cotton, and traceability. This company scored 2/19.5, making it one of the weaker performing companies.
[Source 2016][More on Human Rights]
The 2017 Corporate Human Rights Benchmark assessed 98 of the largest publicly traded companies in the world from the Agricultural Products, Apparel and Extractives sectors on 100 human rights indicators. This company's score was in the 20-29 band range. The overall average score was 28.7%.
[Source 2017][More on Human Rights]
In 2018 KnowTheChain benchmarked 120 large global companies in the ICT, Food & Beverage, and Apparel & Footwear sectors on their efforts to address forced labour and human trafficking in their supply chains. This company received a score of 30/100.
[Source 2018][More on Workers Rights]
The 2017 Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare (BBFAW) report ranks global food companies on how they are managing and reporting their farm animal welfare policies and practices. This company appeared in tier 5, "On the Business Agenda but Limited Evidence of Implementation", with tier 1 being the best, and tier 6 the worst.
[Source 2018][More on Animal Rights]
In Feb 2013 ActionAid (UK) released a report revealing that this company is dodging its tax bill in Zambia, one of the world's poorest countries. ActionAid claims ABF has avoided an estimated US$27 million in taxes in Zambia since 2007, where the company operates a sugar company. ABF denies the allegations (http://bit.ly/1j7m8l6).
[Source 2013][More on Finance]
Oxfam's 2016 Behind the Brands Scorecard assesses the agricultural sourcing policies of the world's 10 largest food and beverage companies. It exclusively focuses on publicly available information that relates to the policies of these companies on their sourcing of agricultural commodities from developing countries. This company ranked equal last with a score of 36%.
[Source 2016][More on Governance]
Primark is an Irish clothing retailer operating 271 stores throughout western Europe, and a subsidiary of Associated British Foods. Primark has been criticised for worker exploitation.
[Source 2014][More on Workers Rights]
Friends of the Earth's 2014 report "Tiny Ingredients, Big Risks" names this company as one of over 200 transnational food companies engaged in nanotechnology research and development, and on their way to commercializing products. New studies are adding to a growing body of scientific evidence indicating nanomaterials may be toxic to humans and the environment.
[Source 2014][More on Product Safety]
This company has a number of sustainability claims on its website in the areas of renewable energy, worker safety, packaging reductions and ethical business practices
[Source 2014][More on Sustainability Reporting]
The Forest 500 identifies, ranks, and tracks the governments, companies and financial institutions worldwide that together could virtually eradicate tropical deforestation. Rankings are based on their public policies and commitments and potential impacts on tropical forests in the context of forest risk commodities (palm oil, soya, beef, leather, timber, and pulp and paper). This company received a score of 3/5.
[Source 2016][More on Forests]
California, the UK and Australia have all enacted legislation requiring companies operating within their borders to disclose their efforts to eradicate modern slavery from their operations and supply chains. Follow the link to see this company's disclosure statement.
[Source 2018][More on Human Rights]
|Wittington Investments Ltd|
Wittington Investments subsidiary Fortnum & Mason has been targeted by PETA for continuing to sell foie gras. Foie gras is made of the liver of a duck or goose that has been force fed grain through a tube for the last 12-18 days of its life under factory farm conditions. More than a dozen countries have prohibited foie gras production due to animal welfare concerns.
[Source 2012][More on Animal Rights]
UK-based protest group, UK Uncut, targeted Wittington Investments during protests in March 2011 for their tax avoidance policies.
[Source 2011][More on Finance]
Brands in 'bread' category received BOTTOM Rating; with a score of 46 out of a possible score of 100 in the Ethical Company Organisation's 'Good Shopping Guide' (UK), which evaluates brands with regard to their environmental, animal welfare and human rights records.
|Garfield Weston Foundation|
In 2010, the UK Charity Commission found that some of the family members who run the Garfield Weston Foundation allowed an investment company it controlled (Wittington Investments) to make illegal political donations between 1993 and 2007. The Charity Commission also found that the charity's nine trustees breached their duties in January 2006 by voting for a resolution allowing Wittington to make donations without giving proper consideration.
[Source 2010][More on Governance]
The Garfield Weston Foundation gives grants to UK registered charities, with the exception of animal welfare charities. Organisations with an 'exempt' or 'excepted' status such as churches, hospitals, educational establishments and housing corporations may also apply for grants.
[Source 2012][More on Finance]
|Company Structure||Wholly-owned subsidiary|
|# Employees||8,000 in 2011 in Australia|
|Subsidiaries||Yumi's Quality Foods Pty Ltd|
|Address||Building A, Level 1, 11 Talavera Rd, North Ryde, NSW, 2113, Australia|
|Phone||02 9815 7300|
|Freecall||1800 645 515|
Products / BrandsGeorge Weston Foods
9 Grain Bread
Abbot's Village Bakery Bread
Bagle House Bread
Bazaar Flat Bread
English Muffins Bread
Jasol Multi-Purpose Cleaners
Kitchen Collection Flour & Bread Mix
KR Castlemaine Smallgoods/Pork
Mills & Wares Cakes
Pataks Cooking Sauce
The One Bread
Tip Top Bread
Tip Top Flour & Bread Mix
Tip Top Flat Bread
Top Taste Cakes
Yumi's Quality Foods
George Weston Foods buys KR Castlemaine
4th Feb 2008 — (AUST >> FOREIGN) British owned George Weston Foods Ltd bought 100 year old Castlemaine smallgoods company KR Castlemaine [source]