From left to right: Fabrice Cavallin, Managing Director - Nestlé Lanka PLC receiving the award from Hon. Arundika Fernando, State Minister - Ministry of Plantations; Hon. Dr. Ramesh Pathirana - Minister of Plantations; and Jayantha Wickramasinghe - Chairman of the Coconut Development Authority, the Coconut Cultivation Board and the Coconut Research Institute.
The Sri Lankan coconut authorities awarded Nestlé at an official event on World Coconut Day, in recognition of its high foreign exchange contribution as one of the world’s largest exporters of coconut milk powder, and the strategic planning support extended to the government to help promote the Sri Lankan coconut industry. Nestlé also supports more than 9,000 local coconut farming families through its business. The award was jointly conferred on the company by Hon. Arundhika Fernando, the State Minister of the Ministry of Plantations, Hon. Dr. Ramesh Pathirana, the Minister of Plantations, and Mr Jayantha Wickramasinghe, Chairman of The Coconut Development Authority, The Coconut Cultivation Board, and The Coconut Research Institute.
“We’re proud to be consistently recognised for the positive impact we make for everyone across our business. As a Good food, Good life company, we want our products to not just be good for our consumers but also good for our community. With almost 800 employees, we have been locally manufacturing over 90% of our products since 1984, at our state-of-the art multi-production factory in Kurunegala. This, together with our strong exports business, has enabled us to contribute significantly to Sri Lanka’s economy. We remain committed to continuing to do good in Sri Lanka, as we have for the last 114 years” said Fabrice Cavallin, Nestlé’s Managing Director, who accepted the award.
Nestlé has been procuring Sri Lankan coconut for its much-loved Maggi Coconut Milk Powder for almost 35 years. Today, its superior quality and taste has not only made it the number one coconut milk powder in Sri Lanka , but also one of the world’s largest coconut milk powder exports, available in over 50 countries. In 2019, Nestlé paid Rs. 2.6 billion for coconut purchases, contributing to the livelihoods of more than 6,000 farmers.
The company is also collaborating with the Coconut Cultivation Board for the Nestlé Coconut Plan, where it is helping another 3,000 farmers and outgrowers grow coconut in their farms, home gardens and in non-traditional areas outside of the coconut triangle. The aim is to help increase the availability of coconut for in-home consumption, as supply is vulnerable to drought and crop disease.