Coffee giants Starbucks and Nestlé-owned brand Nespresso have been caught in a new child labour scandal in a television investigation by the Dispatches team. The episode documented children under 13 – including some estimated to be as young as 8 years old – working 40 hours each week in gruelling conditions on farms in Guatemala.
Over the course of the show, the team visited 12 farms in the country, with 7 of those linked to supplying Nespresso and 5 linked to Starbucks. All 12 farms found evidence of child labour.
They were paid depending on the quantity of beans they picked with sacks weighing up to 45 kilograms. Typically, each child earns less than US$6.40 a day, which is equivalent to some of the lattes offered by Starbucks and Nespresso’s menus.