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Talleys: Corporate scum

Written By: - Date published: 2:14 pm, April 6th, 2009 - 41 comments
Categories: ACC, business, election funding, workers' rights - Tags: , , , , , ,

I’ve long been of the opinion that the Talley family, owners of the Talleys food empire, are a corrosive force in this country who have a complete contempt for their workforce, the public and our democratic institutions.

Sure enough, they’re at it again. NZPA reports:

The New Zealand Food Safety Authority (NZFSA) plans to call South Island food company Talley’s today after a man found a bag of frozen peas he said was made up of nearly 50 percent poisonous black nightshade berries.

It is one of several reported case of contamination of Talley’s products.

Humphrey Elton, a father of preschoolers, said he complained to Talley’s six months ago after finding the berries in a bag of peas.

The company had simply sent him a $5 cheque to replace the peas and a letter saying the berries were not toxic, Mr Elton said.

This is not an isolated incident, it’s part of an ongoing pattern of behaviour.

The Talleys, after all, are the people who were revealed in The Hollow Men to have offered Don Brash $1 million for his corrupt 2005 election campaign.*

Their proposal was titled “The repackaging of Don Brash” and included a plan to funnel the million dollars through a front group in order to “avoid any declarations of political party funding”.

Following Brash and National’s election loss, the Talleys went on to secretly fund Tim Shadbolt’s campaign against transparency in political donations through the Electoral Finance Act last year.

More recently they ran a PR campaign in conjunction with National to try and make the taxpayer foot their $1 million contractual obligation with ACC to provide care for one of their workers who was shot on the job.

Last year they were fined $110,000 and forced to pay $33,000 reparations for recklessly subjecting eleven workers at their Blenheim plant to carbon monoxide poisoning.

And before that they were subject to, and eventually lost, a landmark sexual discrimination case over their refusal to let a woman work as a fish-filleter because she wasn’t a man. Andrew Talley decribed this ruling as ‘pathetic’ and a ‘joke’ and suggested women were better suited to being pole dancers.

Unlike the rest of us, these people seem immune to fines and public shame. They’re reptiles, and they’re laughing in our faces while they’re rolling around in the millions they’ve made at our expense.

I think it’s about time we stopped tolerating this kind of behaviour. How do you reckon we go about it?

[*For an idea of the secret agenda they were pushing look no further than managing director Peter Talley, who is on record as “pro-whaling, pro-genetic engineering, anti-animal rights, anti-MMP and sceptical about global warming“.]

UPDATE: MacDoctor has posted on the black nightshade contamination, encouraging the public to “stop buying Tally’s products immediately, throw out the stuff you have in your freezer and re-purchase a safer brand”. He’s also created the logo below.

talleys

41 comments on “Talleys: Corporate scum ”

  1. vto 1

    I’ve watched them over the years and tend to agree with most of what you allege. They are in fact one of NZ’s best examples of the pure capitalist / businessmanwoman in action.

    The sole focus is money and empire.

    Its pursuit has no boundaries, except the rubbery boundary of what they can get away with whether legal or not.

    They do not apologise for anything and have no shame.

    However, I disagree they’ve made their money “at our expense”. They have made their money by selling to people stuff those people want (except berries it seems).

    So anyway, get stuck into them. They could do with being brought down to size.

  2. Bender 2

    Question: “How do you reckon we go about it?”

    Answer: Our National Party leaders in central government won’t do anything. We should help the workers unionise so they can strike whenever the Talley bastards try to make them eat filth.

  3. I remember that there have been a few interesting enquiries in the past into Talley’s influence over the Nelson City Council. I might try and track them down again.
    Around things like the new convention centre in Nelson:
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/nelson-mail/2052631/TDC-cagey-on-arts-centre

  4. outofbed 4

    And thier huge buying up of water rights and consents in the TDC district
    They have a natural ally in TDC one of the most environmentally unaware local councils in the country.

  5. Pat 5

    Bender wrote: “We should help the workers unionise so they can strike whenever the Talley bastards try to make them eat filth”.

    Gosh – I didn’t realise Talleys were holding workers down and forcing frozen peas down their throats. Or maybe Bender is just currently on a bender.

    I think a better idea is to keep the Deadly Nightshade story in the news. Then the most powerful force used by consumers, otherwise know as Word-of-mouth, will mean shoppers will put Watties peas in their trolleys instead of Talleys. The same thing for their other products.

    Nothing makes a company act faster than a drastic drop in sales.

    • Pascal's bookie 5.1

      As long as they don’t grab ‘McCains’ with their thrice damned television ads, aah mccain you’ve done it again. Fuck off. Just fuck off.

      I hate hatidy hate those ads.

      Talleys too.

      • Rex Widerstrom 5.1.1

        Oooh those!! But have you seen the most stomach-turning food commercials in NZ yet? If not you’re in for treat.

        CU of mother beaming down at camera, talking in babyish voice: “Oh, who’s the cutest widdle baby then? Who’s the sweetest widdle thing? Oooo I could just eat you all up…” (blathers on for a good 15 seconds)

        Pull out to reveal she’s talking to a packet of baby peas.

        Cut to condescending voiceover.

        End on mid shot of father holding the peas in his arms and bending forward to make “Pfffffft” noise on the packet as one does on a newborn baby’s stomach.

        *retch*

        I can’t find them online or I’d post a link with which to torture you. I honestly don’t remember which brand they’re for, I’m too busy shrieking obscenities at the TV to notice.

    • Frank 5.2

      No I think the unionizing thing is a good idea unfortunately most people have been carefully conditioned to reject the best way to protect themselves and hold corporate shit bags in check… strangely enough.
      The only populace with any balls what so ever are the French and Italians they unlike the former British colonies stand up for themselves while we grovel and scrape or give up before we start and let these vermin corrupt our political officials despoil our children’s world and do what ever they want essentially. No wonder why these scum laugh at us all they must be thinking ” what else will these sheep stand still for, let’s find out” I have had enough, I treat these scumbags like the shit that they are and have extracted my revenge many many times and as they say it is a sweet sweet dish to savor indeed. Is there any body else out there with an ounce of guts to stand up for themselves or are you all just talking. If the former then good for you, you should be proud and know you are not alone as they like you to think. If the latter then spare us the pathetic posturing and please shut up and go back to your pathetic Televisions your masters are calling.

    • Frank 5.3

      No I think the unionizing thing is a good idea unfortunately most people have been carefully conditioned to reject the best way to protect themselves and hold corporate shit bags in check… strangely enough.
      The only populace with any balls what so ever are the French and Italians they unlike the former British colonies stand up for themselves while we grovel and scrape or give up before we start and let these vermin corrupt our political officials despoil our children’s world and do what ever they want essentially. No wonder why these scum laugh at us all they must be thinking ” what else will these sheep stand still for, let’s find out” I have had enough, I treat these scumbags like the shit that they are and have extracted my revenge many many times and as they say it is a sweet sweet dish to savor indeed. Is there any body else out there with an ounce of guts to stand up for themselves or are you all just talking. If the former then good for you, you should be proud and know you are not alone as they like you to think. If the latter then please spare us the pathetic posturing and please shut up and go back to your pathetic Televisions your masters are calling.

  6. Tim Ellis 6

    I also agree with much of this post, Tane. Talley’s has shown multiple examples of bad corporate behaviour.

    There’s only really one place you can hit Talley’s where it hurts: by not buying their products.

    I don’t buy Talley’s produce because of their conduct. Perhaps if more people did likewise they might get the message and start behaving more responsibly.

    • Pascal's bookie 6.1

      And perhaps we could set fines that hurt, rather than just being an occasional cost of doing business, Talley’s style.

      • Draco T Bastard 6.1.1

        Yep. It’s the one time that I agree with a hard on crime line. We actually have to have the fines set high enough so that crime doesn’t pay. Actually, the fines should just be set at the amount they made from those actions + courts costs.

  7. Regardless of previous corporate behaviour, Talley’s cavalier attitude to this contamination should be condemned completely. I consider this to be a potential public health emergency and yet Talley’s and the Food Safety Authority appear to be sitting on their hands.

    I invite everyone to join me in boycotting all Talley’s products until they fix this problem and apologise to the public. I have designed a logo to this effect, all bloggers are welcome to use it.

  8. ak 8

    Where’s our new gummint? Lock the bastards up and throw away the Key. Zero talleyrance for this sort of repea behaviour. Join the peas movement. Support the Talleyban. Three veg and you’re sprout.

  9. BLiP 9

    Yes, of course, Talleys is a disgusting example of the sort of corporate scum we have operating in New Zealand. Rock on with the “Talley-Ban”, count me in.

    For me, however, the real villian in this latest food poisoning is the so called Food Safety Authority. That’s the organisation charged with protecting me and my loved ones, that’s the organisation that should be protecting us from the worst crimes of Talleys – yet they are the fuckers who’ve given Talleys all sorts of approvals and exemptions for all sorts of otherwise regulated activities.

    The Authority has been played like a fiddle by the psychopaths running Talleys and should be made just as accountable. Lets have CEO Andrew McKenzie dragged into the limelight and see what he’s gotta say for his sorry arse self.

  10. teitei 10

    Dirty rotten baldheads keeping up their murderous scum traditions. proper pakehas in action.

    [lprent: I see that you still haven’t bothered to learn from previous warnings. Adding you to the anti-spam engine so I don’t have to see your idiotic trash again]

  11. justthefacts 11

    “More recently they ran a PR campaign in conjunction with National to try and make the taxpayer foot their $1 million contractual obligation with ACC to provide care for one of their workers who was shot on the job.”

    Shot by another person who had no connection to the company?

    There is no way that the company should be liable for the care of the victim and no way they should have to pay one cent, I hope to see National change this rule as soon as possible.

    • BLiP 11.1

      Can’t have been a very safe work space to leave your personal items if strangers can wander around there with loaded guns and murderous intent.

      • mickysavage 11.1.1

        justthefacts

        This has had a great deal of analysis. Tally went with the sweetheart deal offered by ACC but promised to take care of all worksite accidents. This happened and their sweetheart deal did not look so good. So they chose to contest the deal.

        I have no sympathy. They thought they would save more money than what they did but why should we pick up the tab if their bet goes wrong?

        Much of the problem is that the ACC system talks about “accidents” that can include what looks like deliberate actions. The no fault system means that all sorts of incidents get caught.

        If the Tallys did not want to pick up the liability they should not have gambled on picking up the saving.

        • justthefacts 11.1.1.1

          micky

          I appreciate the reasoned and polite reply, I wish others would keep to the issues.

          Anyway, where you and I disagree is that I do have sympathy with the company, if there is an option to do a sweetheart deal with ACC there should be another clause inserted that covers “acts of god” or “drive by shootings” etc.

          Of course this just proves what a total and utter mess ACC is in, not only are they broke but they cannot and do not provide the service the public need.

          Do away with it and let us all insure privately, far better for the workers, far better for the companies and far better for the tax payer.

  12. justthefacts – try looking at the facts, they agreed to take on extra liabilities in exchange for paying a tiny amount of their ACC levies. The incident took place on their grounds and the victim was an employee of theirs. A court decision was made that they were liable because of the contract they had signed. What part are you confused by? They made the decision to pay less in levies.

  13. justthefacts 13

    BLiP

    “Can’t have been a very safe work space to leave your personal items if strangers can wander around there with loaded guns and murderous intent”

    Surely you jest?, a company is supposed to protect their workers from gangs and guns now?

    The law needs to be changed now and changed it will be, NO company should be liable for situations such as that, as it happens neither should the tax payer but that is a different argument.

    Loco

    I am not arguing about what happened only who is liable, it does not matter what your political persuasion is there is no way that you can justify charging the company for this act.

    • Felix 13.1

      Then you know nothing about this case – the company agreed to take on more risk in return for lower premiums and then welched on the deal.

      An analogy you’ll (maybe) be able to follow:

      Say I decide to cut my car insurance costs by covering myself for damages to 3rd parties only. Then when someone runs into my shiny corolla I go back to the insurance company and scream “unfair – pay for my car!”. Am I being reasonable? Should the insurance company pay out even though I CHOSE not to cover myself so I could save a few bucks?

      I know you’re not very smart so:

      Talleys was played by me.
      ACC was played by the insurance co.
      The shooter was played by the other driver.

      To make it extra extra clear because I know you need it: Most companies will never, ever be in this position – Talleys were because they made a special deal with ACC.

    • Pascal's bookie 13.2

      Surely you jest?, a company is supposed to protect their workers from gangs and guns now?

      Wrong question. A company is supposed to honour contracts it signs. In this case:

      Affco is liable for $1 million towards the lifetime support of the employee shot in its carpark. That might seem odd, but it is the very clear implication of the contract Affco (and its private insurer) signed with ACC to become an Accredited Employer. As an Accredited Employer, Affco took responsibility for injuries on its property, up to the value of $1 million (Storey’s lifetime support will come in at 10 times that, with the balance paid by ACC) — in exchange for paying virtually no standard employer levies.

      But rather than honour its contract, Affco hired top-flight spin (Richard Griffin) and got National’s Anne Tolley on the case, whereupon the facts started to go west.

      (From the public address link in the post)

      The law needs to be changed now and changed it will be, NO company should be liable for situations such as that, as it happens neither should the tax payer but that is a different argument.

      What law is going to be changed? Will we no longer have to honour contracts if they become inconvenient? Are National getting rid of ‘no fault’ and giving us back the right to sue? Are they doing away with the Accredited Employer scheme? What are you talking about?

      I am not arguing about what happened only who is liable

      Good. According to the contract they signed, the company is liable. As the courts found. Liability is surely a matter of law. Unless you have some other method of determining these things, one that overrides legally binding contracts signed by the people involved.

      it does not matter what your political persuasion is there is no way that you can justify charging the company for this act.

      Evidently not. If you believe in contracts you can certainly justify it. Afterall, that’s what they agreed to be liable for. In fact the only way you can justify them not being liable is if you don’t believe in properly formed contracts being binding. I suggest that that is a pretty fringe political viewpoint in the NZ context, and so the above quote from you gets it almost 100 percent barse ackwards,

    • BLiP 13.3

      How typically National of you – sign up for one thing and then renege. Sigh . . . such are our leaders these days.

    • There is a saying about how the tories want losses to be socialised and profits privatised. If Talley was willing to socialise its profits I am sure that we could look at socialising the losses that it may have suffered from this deal.

  14. justthefacts 14

    Felix

    Clearly you are an imbecile so I will not bother replying.

    Pascal’s

    For the second time, I am not debating what the law currently is, my argument is (and one that I hope the Nat’s share) is that there is no way that any company should be held liable for the actions of an outside force or influence, it is simply crazy.

    If you want to discuss the merits of ACC then perhaps that is best reserved for another thread but the issue here is the sheer lunacy of the current law and how that law must be changed to stop situations like this happening again.

    If the COMPANY were negligent then yes, by all means go them for at least one million but in this case they were clearly the innocent party, I note that as per normal when dealing with the left you do not let little things like the facts get in the way of your naked hatred of business, there is NO WAY that AFFCO agreed to cover its employees for drive by shootings.

    Story should have his own private cover as should the rest of the population, if Story elected not to provide cover for himself then tough luck, either way it is not the companies fault nor should it fall back on the tax payer.

    I suggest you get used to the idea of change Pascal, the Nat’s will be in power for at least nine years, there are lots of things they will change during that time, hopefully this law will be one of them.

    • BLiP 14.1

      Its not about fault, or ACC Its about contract law. Its about Talleys saying one thing and then wriggling like John Key in a pile of money when having to keep its word.

      If there’s any fault in the car park shooting scenario its Talleys’ lawyers not recognising the exposure to liability in the (apparently) sweetheart deal they negotiated. Any decent brief would have elminated the car park zone from the contract. However, Talleys’ usual practise is to do everything on the cheap so they must have got some bozo ambulance chaser to draft the contract.

      And now you’re telling us the tax payers, having been short changed in the first instance, should also pay for Talleys’ fuck up? You twat.

    • justthefacts

      Felix’s analysis is very good and very relevant. Insurance companies every day take money from citizens promising to protect them from the effects of criminal behaviour. Imagine what would happen if your insurance company refused to pay out for the burglary that you suffered on the basis that it was “the actions of an outside force or influence”.

      The market and the rule of law applies. If a private entity chooses to assume the risk that an adverse event may occur why should the state (ie all of us) pick up the tab if the bet was not a good one?

      If AFFCO did not want to cover its employees from being shot then it should first look to its lawyers to see why the contract it signed did not say this.

      This is a classic example of why ACC must be preserved and cover not trusted to insurance companies. Otherwise every third claim will be disputed and will need to be litigated.

    • Pascal's bookie 14.3

      This doesn’t make sense jtf.

      On the one hand you say you only want to discuss the facts, rather than what the law is. But ‘what the law is’ is the relevant fact of this case. On the other hand you seem to be wanting to discuss (though it is unclear), the merits of the no fault system and ACC. But you tell me that should be left for another thread. I agree.

      When you say what you you think ‘should’ be the law, and who ‘should’ have insurance, and what that ‘should’ cover you are moving away from the facts and into opinion about the things you think should be left for another thread. Strange.

      It honestly seems to me that you are the one avoiding the facts. The facts of this case are the contract and what it left AFFCO legally liable for. The courts are the judge of that, and the contract was quite clear. It really is simple, you are entitled to think that some laws are stupid, but that is not a fact, that’s opinion. Opinion about the merits of the ACC system.

      Feel free to talk about the facts of this case anytime you feel up to it, and we’ll leave, as you suggest, opinions about the merits of ACC for another thread.

  15. If you boycott Talley’s they may end up being bought out by some foreign company who won’t give a rat’s arse about anything to do with NZ….and engineer their “costs” so they end up not paying any tax in NZ…..as so many of our foreign-owned corporates do. I used to work for one that paid a 40% “royalty” to head office in the US. This was their way of transferring local profits out of NZ. This company is not intended to make a big profit in New Zealand….and they usually don’t. The aim to make as close to nothing as possible…..

    A Talley’s like that would be worse than the one we have now.

  16. ripp0 16

    jtf,

    is that there is no way that any company should be held liable for the actions of an outside force or influence

    How come you never told all the corps who fell victim to cds/cdo about this BEFORE it happened..?

    yeah, I know you’re in a thread relating acc stuff, but it also has the words ‘corporate’ and ‘scum’ in the title..

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