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Sweatshop claims hit Adidas and Puma
Adidas CEO Herbert Hainer (l) and Puma's Jochen Zeitz. Photo: DPA

Sweatshop claims hit Adidas and Puma

Published: 29 Jan 2011 11:02 GMT+01:00
Updated: 29 Jan 2011 11:02 GMT+01:00

Both firms have in the past made efforts to change their reputation for using sweatshop labour to make their products, and introduced a strict code of conduct for suppliers.

But a study by the American National Labor Committee showed that weekly shifts of more than 60 hours were the norm at producer Ocean Sky, Der Spiegel reported at the weekend.

There around 1,500 workers are watched by cameras as they labour in temperatures of around 37 degrees to sew football shirts for Puma and Adidas subsidiary Reebok.

Both Puma and Adidas have admitted having problems with Ocean Sky last year.

Maik Pflaum from the Christian initiative Romero has criticised them both for irresponsibility. Even ignoring the conditions under which the workers labour, a woman working there full time only earns around a quarter of what is needed to support a family, he said.

Trades unions in the region are traditionally weak and poverty levels high, factors used by the firms to their advantage. Ocean Sky has not responded to questions about its working conditions, while Adidas and Puma said they wanted to check conditions on the ground before commenting, the magazine said.

The Local/hc

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

12:00 January 29, 2011 by pepsionice
And? What?

If you want their shoes made in 1st class and modern factories, by happy Germans....then prepare to fork out double and triple what you pay today. I don't anyone is willing to do that.
13:39 January 29, 2011 by ngwanem
sheeple... sheeple... pepsionice, do you think that is an intelligent comment?

why must a normal consumer fork out so much money to buy a product, whose net profit goes to a high-earning executive of some capitalistic company, who either buys a luxury yacht or spills off champagne worth 500M € in a senseless party or does something extremely stupid, while feeling it his/her divine right to exploit others?

First-class shoes and sportswear can still be made if our greedy CEOS allocate some of the money, they don't even need, to cater for the well-being of their workers. Don't forget without the workers, no products and no consumers... the math is simple and stop rallying behind the corporations, unless you are one of them!

For goodness sake! Those sweatshop laborers are humans and just because you happen to be born on the other side of the world doesn't make you more or less human than them!
14:56 January 29, 2011 by Englishted
They would bring these conditions here if they could .

Only when they a brought to light do they do anything and that only for a short time.
19:22 January 31, 2011 by mikewaite
These hard working people aren't asking to be fed grapes and fanned while they're on the assembly line. Merely paying the LOCAL living wage and providing people with some respectable conditions isn't going to topple the global economy and make prices sky rocket.

We vote for the type of working conditions we support every day as consumers. Reward companies that show respect for their workers and the places they do business.
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