Modern Slavery Intelligence Network Conference Statement

Modern Slavery Intelligence Network Conference Statement

7 Sept 2023

  • Yesterday at the annual MSIN (Modern Slavery Intelligence Network) conference, The Rt Hon Theresa May MP called on the food industry to work together to use its reach across global supply chains to address the growing issue of modern slavery
  • MSIN was created in 2021 by key players in the UK’s fresh food industry to drive sharing of information to disrupt modern slavery activities. In March 2022, the MSIN data-sharing platform was launched, supported by modern slavery data organisation Stop The Traffik, and members began recording live data, some of which has already led to identification of perpetrators.
  • Issues of modern slavery are widespread globally, and growing, with 50 million people worldwide estimated to be in modern slavery. The UK government estimates that around 10,000 people in the UK are in modern slavery; experts believe this number is far higher, closer to 100,000.
  • The conference focused on the power of industry coming together to move further, faster to raise awareness of these issues, share intelligence, and disrupt this criminal activity.

In her speech, Mrs May stressed the power of businesses with international supply chains to make a difference to interrupt and stifle the ability of those responsible for trafficking and exploitation by improving due diligence and driving increasing transparency of issues as a first step to action.

Caroline Haughey OBE, KC, and successful prosecutor of Operation Fort, the largest labour exploitation and trafficking case in Europe, highlighted to the audience the importance of due diligence to understand the nuances of their supply chains and the risks of not acting to drive transparency. Failure to ensure good practice leaves business and those with fiduciary responsibilities for those businesses exposed to risks of allegations of money laundering, bribery or corruption.

For further information or to join MSIN as a member, please contact:

The Modern Slavery Intelligence Network (MSIN) was set up by some of the UK food and agriculture sector’s largest companies in response to the findings of Operation Fort, the UK’s largest ever modern slavery investigation. It has been strongly supported by the office of the former Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner, GLAA and the Information Commissioners Office.

Coming together in 2020, 14 member companies (Sainsbury’s, Tesco, The Co-op, Waitrose, Morrisons, M&S, 2 Sisters Food Group, Bakkavor, Fresca Group, G’s Fresh, Greencore, NWF Limited, Pilgrim Foods Ltd, Samworth Brothers) have been working together to develop an innovative and proactive intelligence-sharing mechanism to enhance their effectiveness in preventing and disrupting modern slavery and labour exploitation within the UK.

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