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NutriAsia clarifies strike issues

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MARILAO, Bulacan — NutriAsia is clarifying facts about the strike issues in its Marilao plant.

In a statement, NutriAsia stressed that the strikers are not employees of the company but regular and permanent employees of its contractor-BMirk Group (BMirk).

BMirk has been certified and confirmed by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) as a legitimate toll packer/service provider, and with over 10,000 employees, counts several of the largest firms in the country as its clients.

The DOLE has expressly confirmed and declared that the strikers have a legitimate employer-employee relationship with BMirk, and not with NutriAsia.

According to NutriAsia, the strikers’ repeated clamor for regularization is baseless, as they are already regular (not casual) and permanent (not endo) employees of BMirk.

“They receive full legally-mandated pay and benefits and enjoy the security of tenure.

Simply put, there is clearly no ‘endo’ being practiced, not by NutriAsia, nor by BMirk,” said NutriAsia.

The Philippine Labor Code does not prohibit legitimate contractualization as it recognizes that each organization has its own capabilities and limitations.

As a company, NutriAsia’s business involves formulation development, new product creation, and the manufacture of products in bulk form.

“We accept that there are better-qualified companies, with the necessary expertise, when it comes to packaging and packing activities. This is the role of BMirk and its employees in our Marilao plant,” said NutriAsia.

In performing its role as a legitimate toll packer/provider, BMirk provides and owns the machines and equipment necessary to complete its engagement.

NutriAsia said the claim of the strikers that the P380 daily wage they receive is unjust is unfounded because BMirk complies with legally- mandated pay rules.

“The legal minimum wage during the relevant period and where the plant is located in Bulacan and the rest of Region 3 is, in fact, P380 a day,” it added.

It pointed out that in fact, some of the protesters have been working for 10 years and they enjoy the benefits mandated under the law such as Social Security System (SSS), PhilHealth, leaves and retirement pay.

NutriAsia also denied the claim that working conditions in the plant are poor saying that the plant has been visited regularly by Philippine and international inspectors and by DOLE representatives.

“They all consistently certified that our plant meets and exceeds the standards for workplace health and safety,” NutriAsia said. (RONDA Balita Online News)

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RAMON EFREN R. LAZARO of Bocaue, Bulacan was a former anchor and marketing director of Radyo Bulacan -- Ang Radyo ng Bawat Bulakenyo . He was also a former reporter of CLTV36 and Sagip Sierra Madre Environmental Society Inc.. Graduated in Gregorio Araneta University Foundation in BS Agriculture and studied at Mapua Institute of Technology. He is presently a correspondent in Philippine Star and contributor at Mabuhay Newspaper in Bulacan. Currently the President of Philippines Science Journalist - Bulacan Chapter

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