Cadbury boycott will hurt employees - union

  • 20/02/2017

The union representing Cadbury's Dunedin factory workers says a public boycott could hasten the loss of jobs and should be avoided.

The controversial call to close the factory was announced last week, and chocolate lovers have taken to social media to threaten a boycott of the company's products unless the decision is reversed.

But Chas Muir, E tū Union's industry co-ordinator, says a move like that could hasten the loss of jobs and cause unnecessary harm.

"If the company is talking about closure and all of a sudden the bottom falls out of their market, I don't know how that would help those Dunedin workers," he told Newshub.

Mr Muir suggests people demonstrate their disapproval in other ways.

"Write to the company, lobby their MPs and write letters to newspapers - all of these things are way to vent their displeasure about this proposal."

He says it's a poor decision to close the factory, but it might yet be saved.

"Sometimes unions are able to persuade companies to change course and recognise the value of loyal workers who have been working for them for many years."

Most production will be transferred to a factory in Melbourne. Nearly 400 employees will lose their jobs.

Owner Mondelez International says the first phase of redundancies will take place late in 2017, with approximately 100 people remaining with the business until early 2018.