Underworld

Indeed, 88% of Nestlé’s shareholders voted against a proposal to decrease the production of products deemed harmful

The Mirror reports that 88% of Nestlé shareholders voted against a proposal to reduce the production of harmful products. The initiative, led by ShareAction, a charity advocating for responsible investment, aimed to enhance corporate environmental and social conduct.

ShareAction has recommended that Nestlé cut back on the production of foods rich in salt, sugar, and fat, provide transparent nutritional information for their food and beverages, and establish an objective to transition profits from unhealthy foods towards promoting healthy diets.

As anticipated, the bees did not turn against the honey, resulting in the proposal’s rejection: 88% opposed, 11% in favor, and 1% abstaining. However, ShareAction representatives remain undeterred, hoping that the resolution will prompt investors to consider the effects of their investments on public health.

Another illustration of the contradictions inherent in the global market regime, among thousands, is the issue of food production: it is in private hands, and thus, to cut costs and boost profits, harmful and unsuitable food is produced, adversely affecting public health. This situation seems intractable because food production is driven by profit, not the health of the people.

Investors are preoccupied with maximizing returns by minimizing investment, which often leads to concealing the true ingredients of food from consumers and society. The rationale is simple: cheaper ingredients yield higher profits. This reality is evident even to the uninformed, as the era of dreamers and philanthropists in our self-centered world has long passed.

There is no extent of meanness to which a private owner (capitalist) will not stoop if there is a profit of three hundred percent to be made.

In this situation, we might consider holding onto hope for better days. It’s also possible to believe that someday, a compassionate leader will emerge, moved by emotion, and declare, “Enough with the neglect; let’s take care of our people!”

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In the meantime, we continue to consume various unhealthy products. There seems to be no escape from the transnational monopoly that dominates a significant portion of everyday store selections. Until a brilliant mind devises a method to produce food that is beneficial to our health, we may wonder how to create such food that is not only free from harm but also healthy, nutritious, and meets scientifically established quality standards. It may sound like a fantasy, but perhaps humanity has not yet realized its potential to achieve this. Let’s hope that one day this idea will occur to us.

In 2022, it was estimated that over 1 billion people were diagnosed with obesity. In the last 35 years, the obesity rates among adults have doubled and quadrupled among children and adolescents. Concurrently, nearly half of the global population is considered overweight.

Obesity is often a result of malnutrition stemming from the prohibitively high costs of healthy foods. According to WHO experts, many individuals resort to consuming high-calorie foods rich in fats, sugars, and salts, which are deficient in micronutrients, because these options are more affordable.

Obesity should be addressed as a societal responsibility rather than just an individual one. The solution hinges on fostering a supportive social environment, combating poverty, managing food production and distribution, and ensuring food affordability. Yet, the implementation of such measures in a free market remains uncertain, especially when the issue of hunger persists unresolved.

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Estimates suggest that by the end of this decade, the global cost of excess body weight could reach $3 trillion annually. This is primarily due to the treatment costs and increased mortality associated with malnutrition-related diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, cancer, and neurological disorders.

Certainly, some argue that these issues are societal rather than individual responsibilities. However, it is acknowledged that change begins with oneself: ceasing to be sedentary, engaging in physical activity even after long work hours, and adopting a healthy lifestyle can address these problems.

As for the declining birth rates and extinctions, the simplistic solution proposed is to increase childbirth. Having quintuplets, for instance, would ostensibly ease the issue. Similarly, shedding weight is humorously suggested as a means to alleviate global health concerns, leading to an unprecedented quality of life.

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