Partner profile: BSIC

Overview

Beer Selling Industry Cambodia (BSIC) is anindustry association for major breweries operating in Cambodia. It has the objective of improving the health,safety and working conditions of beer promoters by setting industry standards.

 

Formation

BSIC was originally developed following collaboration between CARE and Heineken International. In 2005 CARE partnered with Heineken to conduct research on the situation of beer promoters, particularly around the sexual harassment they experience while working. CARE helped the company to develop training modules they could deliver to their workers to improve their knowledge and ability to protect themselves from the risks of their occupation. The Selling Beer Safely training covered topics such as sexual and reproductive health, how to protect themselves from sexual harassment, and the negative effects of drinking alcohol with customers. The team then trained internal trainers who could continue offering this to the company’s beer promoters on a regular basis. In 2006 CARE supported Heineken and other beer companies they partner with to set up BSIC. This included support for legal registration, developing their business model, and technical support for developing their code of conduct.

 

Industry standards

The code of conduct is central to BSIC’s efforts to create recognised industry standards. All members agree to adhere to seven minimum standards relating to the health, safety and working conditions of the women promoting their beer. These cover key safety issues – such as proving transport home at the end of a shift – and employment best practice – such as a basic salary. The code of conduct includes a number of straightforward points on how to interact with customers which are easy for workers to remember and these are reinforced through the training. When the standards were originally developed CARE trained each company’s internal trainers on these so the information can continually be relayed to new workers.

 

Sustainability

As an independent body, BSIC is run by HR managers and other staff from member beer companies. Each full member contributes $5000 per year, while partial members pay $200. Committee members and the chair are elected every two years—these have responsibility for controlling the budget and planning activities. The membership fees cover three key areas of operation: regular research focusing on alcohol consumption, SRH & SH; IEC materials for display in beer outlets; and campaigns such as the 16 Days of Activism to End Violence Against Women. As a result no financial support from donors is required—all training and activities are funded by the beer companies themselves.

 

CARE continues to be involved in an advisory capacity. When beer companies wish to update their training curriculum, they approach CARE for technical advice. This also provides an opportunity for CARE to direct them towards organisations such as the Solidarity Association of Beer promoters in Cambodia (SABC), who can provide additional training so this local partner is supported and has an additional source of funds. CARE also continues to forge links between BSIC and non-BSIC companies where possible so they can expand their membership and positively impact the lives of more beer promoters in Cambodia.

BSIC's Code of Conduct
  • Clear employment status for workers

  • Clear work structures adn grievnace procedures

  • Decent, branded uniforms

  • Transport home from the place of work

  • Training on gender, health, harassment and

    how to deal with customers

  • Zero tolerance approach to harassment

  • Clear policies on drinking alcohol

BSIC members
  • Asia Pacific Breweries

  • Cambodia Brewery Ltd

  • Cambrew Ltd

  • Carlsberg a/s

  • Guinness

  • Heineken International

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© CARE Cambodia 2018

CARE is an international development organisation fighting global poverty, with a special focus on working with women and girls to bring sustainable changes to their communities. 

Defending dignity. Fighting Poverty.