Danone Hit By China Bribery Accusations

danoneAn infant food brand owned by France’s Danone said it is investigating accusations that the company bribed China’s hospital staff to use its products.

Bribery claims

According to claims, Dumex Baby Food Co reportedly paid doctors and nurses in the city of Tianjin to promote its infant formula products.

The report, which cited an unknown former sales manager, comes after an anti-corruption drive by Beijing.

Dumex was “extremely shocked” by the accusations, a company spokeswoman said in a statement. The company “strictly adheres to Chinese laws and regulations.”

The latest accusations against Danone comes after a government-led crackdown on corruption in its $350-billion healthcare division.

Scandals led to distrust

In the China Central Television report, Danone’s Dumex brand is accused of giving “sponsorship fees” or payments of up to 10,000 yuan to hospital doctors and nurses.

This is not the first incident that the French food retailer has encountered problems in China this year.

Danone decided to cut prices of its baby milk formula as much as 20%  after China’s officials charged it for price-fixing.

The company also had to issue a recall of its milk products after one of its suppliers, Fonterra, claimed some products may have been contaminated.