Nestle Half-A-Billion In The Hole After India Sues Over Lead Content



It is always hard to tell who will emerge victorious from huge legal court battles and when one side is a large multinational corporation, facing off against legal proceedings from a nation that is a burgeoning global power, the conflict will be even more protracted and aggressive. 


This is what happened however when India took Nestle to court after some lab tests unearthed that Maggi noodles contained a much greater amount of lead in them than is legal. The government took action by submitting a claim to the nation’s highest consumer court, the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) and pursued 6,400 million Rupees ($98.6 million) in compensation from the Swiss based food giant. “In recent months, we had over 2,700 samples of MAGGI Noodles tested by several accredited laboratories both in India and abroad. Each one of these tests have shown lead to be far below the permissible limits,” the government's statement said.







Maggi noodles and their 2-minute advertising campaign have made the snack very popular in India and are the nation’s fastest-selling food, racking up approximately 15 billion Rupees ($240 million) a year in sales. Tests also found traces of monosodium glutamate (MSG) in the noodles and despite Nestle India appealing to Mumbai’s High Court, the noodles were banned from sale across the country in 2015. They have since returned to shops in India, but what with sales drops, product recalls and the damages paid, it has resulted in the company expecting an estimated loss of half a billion dollars… a costly punishment indeed!




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