This report examines the tax practices of one of the world’s largest food multinationals, the Associated British Foods (ABF) group, in one of the most impoverished places in which it operates. ABF produces staple brands like Silver Spoon sugar, Kingsmill bread, Ryvita and Patak’s, and also owns clothing chain Primark. We look particularly at the activities of ABF’s Zambian subsidiary, Zambia Sugar Plc.

This report shows how tackling the problem will require both national and international action across three fronts: companies’ ingenious financial engineering, weak international tax rules, and governments’ deliberate tax policies. While the group of companies detailed in this report have taken (lawful) advantage of loopholes in international tax laws, they have also benefited from tax breaks deliberately written into countries’ tax codes, responsibility for which ultimately lies with governments.