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Tim Culpan

Taiwan’s Tech Giants Are Being Hit by India Culture Shock

After decades in China, major Taiwanese tech manufacturers are struggling to adapt to India. Now, workers are fighting back.

Food poisoning was just one of the problems.

Food poisoning was just one of the problems.

Photographer: Karen Dias/Bloomberg

A year after Apple Inc. supplier Wistron Corp. faced an uprising in India, its larger rival Foxconn Technology Group is encountering a similar rebuke. This time, their key client is getting drawn into what ought to serve as a wake up call for Taiwanese manufacturers in the South Asian nation.

Concerns about food safety and accommodation standards spurred Apple to take the unusual step of placing the factory near the southern Indian city of Chennai on probation. More than 17,000 people work at the facility, and in mid-December hundreds of workers contracted food poisoning. More than 150 were hospitalized.