Danone communites

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Danone.communities was a new step of the concept « Danone for all ». Danone.communities was born from Frank Riboud, the chairman and managing director of Danone, and Muhammad Yunus meeting in 2005.

Muhammad Yunus is the president of Grameen Bank, the first Microfinance organization. He awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006 « for his effort to create economic and socialdevelopment ». Muhammad Yunus has developed the « social business » concept in his book « Creating a world without Poverty – Social Business and the Future of Capitalism ». A social business is a non-loss, non-dividend company designed to reach a social objective.

Frank Riboud and Muhammad Yunus share the same ideas about the most underprivileged development. So they decided to create thecompany « Grameen Danone foods » in 2006.

The project aim is to reduce poverty with a new business type which brings every day a healthy food to the poorest. The foor major purposes are :

Offer a high added-value product as far as nutrition is concerned,
Create new jobs,
Protect environment,
To be economically viable.

The first project of Grameen Danone foods was to create a yoghourtfactory in Bangladesh whose mission was to help local development. And the first factory opened up in 2007 in Bangladesh. Yoghourts producted by the factory are strengthened in nutriments such as zinc, iron, vitamin A. Then, yoghourts are sold cheaply to be opened to all (accessible à tous). The aim of this cheap price is to cure Bangladesh children nutritional deficiencies.

To be more effective,in 2007 Danone Group created Danone.communities fund, a financial aid to support social businesses and to develop more projects. Danone.communities is managed by Credit Agricole. The company invested 20 millions of euros in this fund. At the beginning of the year 2009, Danone.communities fund reached 66 millions of euros.

For the time being, Danone.communities carried out three investments inthree different places :

Grameen Danone Foods in Bangladesh,
« 1001 Fontaines » in Cambodge,
« La laiterie du berger » in Senegal.

Grameen Danone Foods in Bangladesh

Grameen Danone Foods in Bangladesh was inaugurated on 8 Novembre of 2006 by Zinedine Zidane, the world famous soccer star and the first factory opened in Bogra.

Grameen Danone Foods is a joint-venture between DanoneGroup and Grameen Bank. That is why Grameen Danone Foods is managed by four Grameen companies named Grameen Byabosha Bikash, Grameen Kalyan, Grameen Shakti and Grameen Telecom, and by Danone Group of France.

GDF objective is to provide nutritious dairy food for children who live in the rural areas. Long terms objectives are to put in 50 additional dairy plants in the next ten years in the ruralareas of Bangladesh.

With the help of nutritionists from the Global Alliance of Improved Nutrition, a non-governemental organization, Grameen Danone Foods developed « Shokti Doï » yogurt. This yogurt is strengthened in nutriments such as zinc, iron, vitamin A. The yogurts are sold cheaply, only 6 euros cents, to be opened to all. In this way, even the poorest populations have access to ahealthily nutrition.

In Bangladesh, one child out of two suffers from malnutrition. It is a human tragedy. GAIN NGO leads an effectiveness analysis since august 2008 to assess the impact of Shokti consummation on children health who eat it.

Moreover, Grameen Danone Foods affects people's lives not only by improving their health. The all production is made to give as many people as possible ajob. The milk for the yogurts is purchased from micro farmers. Bogra factory reduced machines in favour to workforce. Then « Shokti » Ladies sell yogurts door-to-door. They were 560 at the end of 2009 whereas they werer 30 at te end of 2008.

Grameen Danone Foods is responsible for the creation of about 1,600 jobs within a radius of 30 kilometers around the plant.

By giving micro farmers...
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