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Updated 10:00 AM April 17, 2006




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U resumes buying Coca-Cola products

The University has announced it will resume purchasing Coca-Cola products, effective immediately.

The announcement came in a letter to the Coca-Cola Company April 11 from Timothy P. Slottow, executive vice president and chief financial officer, and Peggy Norgren, associate vice president for finance.

U-M had suspended the purchase of Coca-Cola products Jan. 1 when the soft drink company was not able to proceed with an independent, third-party review of its labor and environmental concerns at its bottling plants in Colombia and India. The investigations were called for by the University's Dispute Review Board, a faculty-led committee that looks into possible violations of U-M's Vendor Code of Conduct.

The Coca-Cola Company sent a letter April 10 to the University outlining how and when the United Nations International Labor Organization will conduct an independent third-party review of the company's labor practices in Colombia, and recommending a process for a third-party assessment of environmental concerns in India.

"We believe these next steps for carrying out the two investigations will allow for a credible, independent assessment of the concerns raised by our Dispute Review Board," Slottow and Norgren wrote in their response.

The U-M letter noted that the investigations will be transparent, and that the final reports will be forwarded directly to the University without editing by Coca-Cola. "We expect these two review processes to move forward with reasonable speed, and we anticipate a continued dialogue about remediation of any concerns identified in the final reports," Slottow and Norgren wrote.

As of today (April 17), Coca Cola products are being re-stocked in campus vending machines. The University's correspondence with Coca-Cola and related materials are posted at:

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