Danone claims its “responsibility” to continue doing business in Russia Business

France’s Danone has defended its decision to continue doing business in Russia despite backlash against Western companies that have yet to flee Vladimir Putin’s regime.

The world’s biggest yogurt maker is among the food and drink giants that have resisted pressure to leave Russia, saying late last week that it was suspending investment but would continue to sell their products there.

Danone is considered one of the consumer goods companies with the most exposure to Russia, where it sells yoghurt and other dairy products and has about 8,000 employees.

The company generates about 6% of its revenue in Russia, or about 1.4 billion euros (£1.2 billion), according to Bernstein analysts.

Antoine de Saint-Affrique, the chief executive, defended the decision to stay in Russia, saying it was “very easy to get caught up in black-and-white thinking and demagogic positions, but in the end our reputation depends of our behavior.

“We have a responsibility to the people we feed, the farmers who supply us with milk and the tens of thousands of people who depend on us,” he told the Financial Times on Tuesday.

His comments come even as consumers are stepping up pressure on Western companies to pull out of Russia, with calls to boycott McDonald’s and Coca-Cola on Twitter over the weekend.

KFC, Starbucks, Burger King and PepsiCo have also remained silent over the past week.

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This notice was published: 2022-03-08 13:48:03

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