U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) have released PureCircle shipments that had been previously withheld from entry into the U.S., based on inaccurate allegations that they contained stevia that was produced using forced labor. The shipments were released after CBP review of substantial, detailed traceability documentation provided by PureCircle, including independent, third-party verifications.
“We fully support CBP’s commitment to ensuring that fair labor practices have been used in the production of any product entering the United States,” said PureCircle’s CEO Magomet Malsagov. “PureCircle is committed to human rights and fair labor practices globally in all parts of its business and supply chain. We operate a robust system of checks and balances to ensure that all our suppliers adhere to a strict Supplier Code of Conduct. We are pleased that the CBP has confirmed that PureCircle’s shipments are compliant with the law and have been released.
Stevia is an important alternative to sugar in the global fight against obesity. We remain committed to our stated mission of encouraging healthier diets around the world through the supply of natural ingredients to the global food and beverage industry.”
In response to questions by CBP, PureCircle provided documentation including:
- Bureau Veritas (independent, 3rdparty) Audit Report on Labor Practices & Supply Chain Relationship – China which found:
- No evidence of force, bonded or involuntary prison labor
- Proper procedure of assessing suppliers
- Proper traceability systems in place to trace each batch of extract produced to leaf supplier
- SEDEX Members Ethical Trade Audit (SMETA) which found:
- No forced, bonded or involuntary prison labor
- Conformance with regulations regarding Employment Freely Chosen, Child Labor, Regular Employment
- PureCircle Global Labor Policy and Supplier Code of Conduct, which explicitly prohibits the use of forced labor in any part of our business.
- Detailed records, including purchase, production, and financial documentation, to establish clear and continuous oversight of fair labor practices throughout our supply chain
We continue to work actively with CBP to correct all inaccurate allegations from others regarding our labor practices and the removal of PureCircle’s name from the Withhold Release Order. As the stevia industry leader, PureCircle remains committed to human rights and fair labor practices. As we expand our vertically integrated supply chain, we remain committed to traceability and transparency as a critical way to verify compliance with our Global Labor Policy and Supplier Code of Conduct.
PureCircle is the world’s leading producer of high-purity stevia ingredients for the global food and beverage industry. Its mission is to encourage healthier diets around the world through the supply of natural ingredients to the global food and beverage industry. Its vision is to lead the global expansion of stevia as the next mass volume, natural-origin sweetener. PureCircle has offices around the world with the global headquarters in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It was founded in 2002 and was incorporated into PureCircle Limited in 2007. PureCircle’s shares are listed on the main market of the London Stock Exchange and trade under the ticker symbol PURE. For more information, visit: www.purecircle.com.
For More Information
Contact: Rachel Quenzer,
PureCircle, Commercial Division Global Communications Manager