Colombia · Decision · Administrative

Dejusticia v. Gaseosas Posada Tobón S.A.

Issue:

Dejusticia sent petition rights and requests for information to entities such as Ministry of Health (Ministerio de Salud), Colombian Institute of Family Welfare (ICBF) (Instituto Colombiano de Bienestar Familiar), Attorney General's Office (Procuraduría General de la Nación), Invima and the Superintendence of Industry and Commerce (Superintendencia de Industria y Comercio).
The objective was to question the campaign carried out by Postobón in Guajira.

Summary:

Between July 2017 and February 2018, Gaseosas Posada Tobón S.A. (Postobón) developed a social responsibility program that consisted on distributing “Kufu”, an experimental drink, in ethnic schools in La Guajira, with the logo “Kufu wants to see you grow!” (“¡Kufu quiere verte crecer!”). There were measures taken to see changes in the growth of kids in the community, such as blood tests.
However, the experiment was questioned by civil society due to the lack of nutrients in the beverage and its high sugar content.
Dejusticia requested information through an administrative procedure regarding the campaign. Through this action and communication work, the coalition highlighted a situation of industry interference of a beverage company in an indigenous community in Colombia.
There is still no answer from the authorities to Dejusticia’s request.
Postobón rolled back the campaign voluntarily. After this happened, the case was taken to the Superintendence of Health (Superintendencia de Salud), which resolved the following:
1. The project had a social assistance focus, not a research one.
2. The project was known at the time by the Ministry of Health and Social Protection (Ministerio de Salud y Protección Social) and the Territorial Entities of the municipalities of Riohacha and Manaure (Entidades Territoriales de los municipios de Riohacha y Manaure).
3. Taking into account that the corporate purpose of Postobón does not include the provision of health services, no situations were identified as violations of the norms that regulate the General System of Social Security in Health.