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第十届中国企业公民论坛

罗世范:食品安全与责任管理

时间:2014-11-23 20:04来源:未知 作者:企业公民 点击:
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罗世范(Dr.Stephan Rothlin/对外经济贸易大学教授
罗世力国际管理咨询有限公司总裁/博士

 

    各位领导、女士们、先生们,大家好!真的非常感谢给我这个学习的机会,我在中国工作,我很早前用英文讲我的主要内容,我想强调为什么中国新环保法是那么重要,因为北京的老百姓要求是什么呢?一定是把这个特别漂亮的APEC蓝色还给我们,我想简单介绍一下为什么新的环保法那么重要,可能把APEC蓝还给我们。

       中国和很多国家一样在环境保护法制建设方面成绩斐然。毋庸置疑,政府层面承诺实施这些法律至关重要,尽管如此,一个有争议但不容我们忽视的话题是:要想让蓝天碧水绿草重现,我们是不是应该更加重视公民组织的作用?

       中国对1989年版环境法进行了修订,新法将于2015年1月1日生效,中国在环保方面取得的进步有:

       ㈠从前污染者增长的责任感;

       ㈡政府部门和官员增长的责任感;

       ㈢越来越多的公众曝光不法污染事件;

       ㈣针对污染者的侵犯公众利益的诉讼案件;

       ㈤对举报者的保护。

       常规解决思路

       用常规的解决思路我们有时会带着成见去预先设定结论,把这种结论当作灵丹妙药甚至“真理”。例如,应对降低二氧化碳排放量和遏制住水、土地和空气污染继续恶化的挑战迫在眉睫,我们的常规思路提供的解决方案却只能限制在以下方面:

       ㈠政府应该推行严厉的环境保护法律;

       ㈡政府应该对违反环保法律者课以重罚;

       ㈢毒奶粉事件后食品安全问题得到空前重视并且取得了巨大进步;高层领导人现在已经郑重承诺了尽最大努力改善我们的环境云云。

       在此我对常规解决思路的局限性的表述也许有点简而化之了,但是却实实在在地反映了人们通常怎么思考问题的。关于毒奶粉事件及其恶果这里我想简短地表达我对公民组织包括消费者运动和媒体的一些观点:各级政府的努力毫无疑问是十分必要的、富有成效的,但我还是认为公民组织的重要性不容忽视,其对政府工作实际上是起着一种至关重要的互补作用。这里我想用我的管窥之见,抛砖引玉,希望能给在座各位提供一种参考和另外一种解决问题的思路。

       产品安全丑闻风波及对本土产品信任的缺失

       2008年被揭露出来的毒奶粉事件起因于利欲熏心的犯罪分子在鲜奶中掺入了一种名为三聚氰胺的化学原料,全国范围内近三十万名1岁以下的婴儿因此致病,其中6名婴儿死亡。这次事件对三鹿公司所在地河北石家庄市的影响是灾难性的,还严重损害了仍然沉浸在成功举办第29届夏季奥运会喜悦当中的中国人的国际形象。不用说,政府因此出台了一系列强有力的专项措施,包括对此次案件犯罪分子的严惩。尽管政府采取了多管齐下的应对举措,有力地打击了犯罪分子,遏制住或者说消除了往鲜奶中添加三聚氰胺的犯罪现象,然而,我们不得不面临的现实是:我们并不能因此阻止其他犯罪分子为了牟利实施类似的犯罪行为。事实上,毒奶粉事件后继续曝光了的有关食品安全的丑闻似乎无休无止,国人因而丧失了对本土食品的信任。大陆人开始到香港恐慌性地抢购非中国大陆生产的奶粉,大陆人的扫货行为使得香港本地人甚至无法给自己的孩子买到奶粉,香港特区政府顺应民意,颁发强制限制大陆人在香港购买奶粉数量的限购令也就顺理成章了。

       真正理解消费者运动

       也许是因为中国历史上改朝换代后总是对公民组织有一种潜意识的担忧,当然是因为特定的历史原因,一些人想当然地认为公民组织会损害中央政府的权威。为了回应这种人吓人的担忧,有必要强调一点,即只要对整个社会有益,任何形式的公民组织都必须依赖于法制、遵守法律。因此,当前中国国有媒体广泛宣传法制社会的运动理应得到全民拥护。实际上法制这个词本身就包含着法律和依法而治的双重意思,只有在健全的法律框架的基础上,甚至在政府强有力的领导下才能发展公民组织。因此,那些将公民组织置于政府对立面的见解是误导。事实上一个健全的法律框架和依法治国能使每个公民参与进来,使每个公民都能得到基本权力,用一个中国儒家经典的概念来表述:每一个人都得到了尊严。

       瑞士和澳门消费者运动的启示

       为了增强单个消费者的权利,通常所说的消费者运动在维护消费者权益方面变得至关重要。消费者运动在全世界范围内得到蓬勃发展,越来越显著地提高了个体消费者以及特定社会阶层的权益意识。

       应当承认早期消费者运动大部分发生在上世纪七十年代的欧洲一些国家。值得注意的是在我的瑞士老家消费者组织和公平贸易团体当时处于完全的边缘状态----无人理睬他们的见解。似乎只有部分生活极端精致的人群才会觉得像香蕉这样的产品如果不是在能保证生产者安全条件和绿色环保条件下生产出来的自己的生活就受到了影响。这么多年过去了,不管怎么说消费者的观念已经发生了天翻地覆的改变,从商标和门类众多的国际标准就能看出消费者越来越关心餐桌上摆的应该是绿色生态的的健康食品而不是被各种杀虫剂污染过的食品。

       这么多年来我同澳门消费者委员会有着合作关系,我因此也有机会见识了他们组织的多种多样的活动,这些活动反映了消费者不断增长的消费者权益意识,他们越来越要求在澳门得到可靠的产品和服务。类似地需要注意到过去几年兴起的“绿色产品”商标,这表明了不同企业满足消费者对健康食品需求的战略。

       消费者的核心需求:可靠、信任和商标

       去年瑞士同中国缔结了具有历史意义的自由贸易协定,实实在在反映了两国多年来发展起来的信任关系和合作精神。中国人经常感到惊奇的是瑞士这么小的一个国家究竟有什么秘诀竟然能拥有那么多的国际著名品牌。答案肯定很复杂。不管怎么说,一个关键要素是一些瑞士企业包括中小型企业一向成功地迎合客户需求。在上个世纪著名的钟表行业严重危机中,企业家Nicolas Hayek 有着对钟表业革命化的强烈愿景,开发出了一种相对不昂贵但是却包含着浓厚时尚元素的新的手表类型,创造了一个新的时尚品牌,即“斯沃琪”。然而瑞士也发生过制药工业严重污染河水的灾难,这引起了瑞士全国对那些只是用商标把自己“漂绿”但并不是真正地为环保做贡献的行业进行全面反思。因此,发展国际知名品牌不仅仅是为了设计一个独一无二的产品,像瑞士钟表行业那样。它还反映了对一种可靠产品的信任,这种产品既不能伤害人类本身也不能污染我们的自然环境。

       结论

       本人上述对消费者关注的责任管理的简短解说突出了要细致地和连续性地分析消费者需求的必要性。重大事故诸如产品安全危机的积极的一面是向不同类型的相关利益人指明了迎合消费者不断增长的对可靠食品需求的必要性。另外,除了健全相关法律外,不可否认的是消费者协会在加强消费者权益方面可以扮演一个关键性的角色。况且,消费者协会影响力的一个重要作用是能关注劳工的工作环境。一个公平的产品价格能保证那些生产某个产品的工人也能从本企业的成功中收益。

 

Summary

China along with many other countries has achieved great progress in the development of laws which are conceived to protect the environment. While the commitment of the government to implement these laws remains crucial it is argued that the involvement of the civil society will be becoming more and more prominent in order to achieve the desired goals of a cleaner environment.

Progress from the New Environmental Protection Law ,January 1, 2015, the revised law of 1989: 

a) Increased accountability of polluters

b) Increased accountability of government bodies and officials

c) Increased public disclosure

d) Public interest lawsuits against polluters

e) Protection for Whistle-Blowers

 

Product Safety Scandals and the Lack of trust in its own products

The milk scandal in 2008 related to the activity of criminal gangs which mixed the chemical substance of Melamin within milk products which sickened a large number of infants(about 300.000,and 6 were dead) had a devastating effect not only for the concerned stakeholders of the firm Sanlu, the city Shijiazhuang  but actually seriously damaged the image of China just after its splendid success of holding the Olympic games. There has certainly been a strong action of the government including to punish perpetrators. However, taking into account all the concerted action of the government the fact is that it could in no way prevent other perpetrators to engage in similar fraud. In fact, the string of seemingly unending food scandals caused a breakdown of trust of consumers in their own local food. It therefore comes to no surprise that panic buying of milk powder in Hong Kong provoked a new legislation in Hong Kong restricting the quantity of milk powder which can legally be taken away from Hong Kong.

Understanding the meaning of consumer movements

As there may always be an underlying fear certainly due to a historic context deeply characterized by subsequent dynasties that civil society would necessarily undermine the power of the Central Government. In order to counter such fearful arguments it is important to underline that any form of civil society which will be beneficial to the whole society must rely on the rule of law. Therefore the present move in the Chinese state media to push for the rule of law must be welcomed. Actually the term 法治 (“Fazhi ») indicates both « Rule of Law » and « Rule by Law ».Only on the basis of a sound legal framework and indeed under a strong leadership can the civil society develop. It is thus misleading to pretend that civil society would in any way be opposed to the government given the fact that a sound legal framework and the rule of law enables the participation of each citizen, giving each one equal access to fundamental rights or, in the more local definition of a Confucian framework its dignity.

 

Consumer Movements: The example of Switzerland and Macau

In order to enhance the rights of each single consumer so called consumer movements have become crucially important to vindicate the legitimate rights of consumers. This movement has spread all over the world. More significantly it has sharpened the awareness of the individual consumer as well as specific sections of society. 

Admittedly the development of consumer movements has seen an early start mostly in the seventies in countries in Europe. Notably in my home country Switzerland consumer organizations and fair trade groups were first perceived as totally marginalized. Only highly sophisticated groups seemed to bother if products such as bananas were produced in safe and human labor conditions. However, over the years the labeling and the different ISO standards clearly indicated a growing concern among the consumers fed up with food affected by all kind of pesticides towards biologically sound food. 

Over the years I had also the opportunity to cooperate with the Macau Consumer Council. Their various activities did respond to the growing concern of the consumers more and more flooding Macau to get reliable products and services.

Over the last years the labeling of “Green Products” needs to be seen along similar lines. It indicates the strategy of different lines of business to satisfy the need of consumers for healthy food.

Responding to key needs of consumers: reliability, trust and brand

Switzerland has last year concluded a historic land mark free trade agreement with China. It certainly reflects the trust and spirit of cooperation which has grown over many years. It often amazes Chinese what were the key factors that such a small country like Switzerland has produced a large number of international brands. The answer is certainly complex. However a key element is that some of the Swiss corporations including also small and medium sized enterprises have consistently managed to respond to key consumer needs. In the midst of a serious crisis of the well known watches industry the entrepreneur Nicolas Hayek had the strong vision of revolutionizing the industry by a new type of a relatively inexpensive watch which involved a strong fashion statement: the “Swatch”. However, also huge industrial disasters in the pharma industry polluting rivers provoked a whole rethinking of an industry often also labeled as “green washing” when it has not truly be seen as contributing seriously to the protection of the environment.  Developing internationally renowned brands has, thus, not just been a matter of painstaking patience in designing unique products for which the watchmakers are famous for. It also reflected a trust in the reliability of products which would not harm neither human beings nor the natural environment. 

Conclusion

The brief reflection on responsible management of consumer concerns has highlighted the need to carefully and consistently analyzing the consumer needs. The positive side of serious crises such as the product safety crises has indicated to various stakeholders the need to respond the growing concern among consumers to provide sound food.  In addition to the progress in the law it is undeniable that consumer associations may more and more play a crucial role in enhancing consumer rights.  Moreover, an important element of the influence of consumer associations is the attention paid to the working conditions of the workers; making sure that a fair price for a product would also ensure that those who work for a given product would also benefit from the success of a firm.

 
 
(责任编辑:企业公民)
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