Think tank calls for boycott of Food Panda

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Public policy think tank InfrawatchPH is calling for the boycott of Food Panda because it sees its treatment of its delivery drivers ‘unfair’.

“Tech delivery platforms, if it were true that they exist to make the world a better place, create jobs and contribute to economic growth, should do better than treat their riders with indignity and contempt.

As a platform business, Foodpanda’s success is dependent on its users: food vendors, riders and customers.

We are encouraging its users to migrate to other platforms that can provide better beneficial relationships , most particularly to its riders, whose daily subsistence incomes are dependent on every transaction,” lawyer Terry Ridon,  convenor of the policy think tank said.

Infrawatch PH believes the labor department has failed to resolve the company’s ongoing dispute between with its riders, thus invoking for customers’ help by removing the app from their smartphones and using other food delivery platforms instead.

Ridon said the app’s entire business model operates on utilizing investment funding, capturing value from food vendors and limiting the just share of its riders.

“If the riders were truly independent contractors, why can they not opt out of providing service to food delivery apps? Why should they then be suspended from providing services due to activities unrelated to their service agreement?”

Food Panda’s measures appear to be punitive actions arising from an employment relationship, not independent contracting, Ridon believed.   “Make up your mind on what your riders are.”

Ridon said the promise of the technology sector was to push the limits of human innovation and create new frontiers unimagined in the past. 

“And part of its promise was also to uplift the human condition, to make the world better, to make our lives better.

This has not been the case for the riders in Davao, and with no resolution in sight, the best recourse is nothing else but #removefoodpanda.”

Ridon, who studied finance at Harvard Business School, said that no new investments should be made to the company or to its parent Delivery Hero until it complies with reasonable labor standards in dealing with its riders.

“Foodpanda should be warned that it has not yet captured market leadership in the Philippines, and critical towards this is continuing investment funding for rapid growth.

Whether through another investment round or an initial public offering, new investors should be given notice that the company currently treats its riders with indignity.

Unless resolved, they deserve no single amount of new funding.”

Artemio A. Dumlao