World's Largest Disposable Glove Manufacturer Accused of Labor Rights Abuse

Labor rights abuse in glove manufacturing has been highlighted as an issue for years. Eagle Protect is proud to launch their Fingerprint Check to further verify their disposable gloves are food safe. Included in this third-party verification process is a comprehensive Child Labor Free audit.
Young children walking to work while others walk to school
Young children walking to work while others walk to school
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. - Jan. 15, 2019 - PRLog -- A recent Reuters article (Dec. 2018), has yet again highlighted labor abuse and exploitation of workers in factories of a major supplier of disposable gloves to US industries.

Malaysian company Top Glove is the world's largest manufacturer of disposable gloves, producing up to 60.5 billion gloves per year for health, elder care, food and industrial industries. This most recent investigation highlighted forced labor and migrant worker exploitation throughout their vast network of factories.

This is not a one-off allegation. In 2015 the British Medical Association (BMA) Medical Fair and Ethical Trade group convened to tackle labor rights abuse in the medical (disposable) gloves manufacturing industry. Their report "In Good Hands. Tackling labor rights concerns in the manufacture of medical gloves" highlights numerous labor rights abuse reports of Top Glove and other manufacturers.

Top Glove produces its own brand of gloves, but, as reported in the BMA report, 80% of its production is for other global brands, including global glove supplier Ansell. As reported by ABC News, unions and labor rights experts have called on Ansell to step up efforts to protect workers at Top Glove factories in Malaysia that supply gloves to the company.

Modern Slavery Acts both in Australia and the UK, are attempting to address modern slavery risks in their operations and supply chains of business in their respective countries. However, a recent report of non-compliance has been described as "concerning."

With global manufacturing companies chasing the lowest cost of production to satisfy shareholder demands, and glove suppliers and end users demanding the lowest price possible, areas in the supply chain suffer. Factories may compromise raw material ingredients by adding fillers and cheap toxic compounds, neglect environmental standards and exploit those working at the glove factories.

The disposable glove industry has not attracted the same media attention as other manufacturing industries. Consumers do not think about disposable gloves as they do with their clothes, for example, so it comes under less scrutiny.

Although the slavery laws may just be window dressing to some companies, the hope is consumers and end users of disposable gloves will care enough to demand knowledge and proof of supply chain transparency in the product that protects their hands. Ensuring glove suppliers personally visit factories, and regularly audit labor conditions, environmental impact and quality control are essential to combat the issue of labor abuse. Additionally, third-party verification by recognized organizations such as Child Labor Free is a further commitment to transparency in suppliers' supply chain.

Steve Ardagh CEO of Eagle Protect (, specialist glove supplier to the US food industry and certified B Corp said, "Out of sight out of mind is a problem with products like disposable gloves, but fortunately the world is becoming a more transparent place and consumers and businesses have the power to change things with their purchasing!"

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Lynda Ronaldson
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Tags:Food Safety, Human Rights, Disposable Gloves, Labor Abuse, Food-safe, Gloves, Bcorp, Child Labor Free
Industry:Food, Manufacturing, Restaurants
Location:South Lake Tahoe - California - United States
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Page Updated Last on: Jan 15, 2019

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