The company closed the Kherson Oblast plant in February and supported the evacuation of ‘as many of our employees who were able to leave’ in a bid to protect its workforce in the region.
“The plant has incurred significant damage as a result of Russian hostilities in the area. We lost control of the plant and we do not believe that the so-called provisional occupation administration will be able to resume operations there,” the company said in a statement.
The occupying authorities reportedly asked Danone to recommence operations in the city. However, Danone is not reopening the site and, should a Russia-backed Provisional Occupation Administration succeed in getting the plant running again, Danone stressed it could not be responsible for the safety or quality of products.
“Were the plant made partially operational by edict of the Provisional Occupation Administration, Danone cannot be responsible for the quality and processes that might be used, given the departure of most of the workforce and the damage to the plant itself. In that challenging circumstance, Danone would not stand by the company’s demanding food safety standards and thus considers it inconceivable to operate,” the French head-quartered dairy giant explained.
According to local reports, Danone has transferred part of its production from Kherson to its plant in Poltava Oblest. The Ekonomichna Pravda newspaper said brands including Activia, Danone and Rastishka yogurts have resumed production here.