What to do in a crisis

As a global network, we need to be able to work quickly and effectively together to coordinate and manage any issue or crisis that could impact the reputation of the Pink Lady® brand.

If we don’t, we risk loss of market access, consumer and government support and loss of revenue.

For this reason, each Master Licensee should have a Crisis Management Plan in place and importantly know what to do when an issue arises.

The main objectives of crisis management are:

  • Ensure the health and safety of customers, consumers, employees and the general public.
  • Remove any threat to life and safety, in cooperation with the relevant authorities and agencies.
  • Ensure that the normal services to customers and consumers are maintained, including the provision of alternate sources.

In the event of a crisis, timeliness is essential, according to APAL’s Head of Government Relations and Agency, Jeremy Griffith.

“Time and communication are absolutely critical. You’ve got to make sure that the relevant people know as soon as possible,” he said. “If in doubt, just make the phone call, send the email.”

A Crisis Management Plan should be an easy to follow guide that outlines the logical process of what to do when a crisis arises. The plan contains vital information outlining the necessary steps to take when a crisis is identified, including a list of important stakeholders to contact.

“We [need to] coordinate to make sure that we are getting a clear and consistent message out to the public, the media and all the key markets,” Jeremy explains.

The main points of a Crisis Management Plan are as follows:

Step 1: Assess the threat and provide an immediate response

  • What happened?
  • What initial actions have been taken?
  • Is the incident stable? Is there immediate threat of serious injury?
  • What needs to be done now?
  • Who needs to be advised?

Step 2: If a crisis has been identified, assemble a Local Crisis Management Team urgently

  • There should be core group of people in each Master Licence that can be assembled in the event of a crisis to work out the next steps.
  • Time is critical.
  • Set up a meeting room to coordinate.
  • Make clear action lists and allocate responsibilities. What needs to be done?
  • Initially, meet 3 times a day to review progress and plan next steps.

Step 3: Notify APAL’s Pink Lady® Global Coordinating Team Management team for support

Jeremy Griffith+61 467 817
Andrew Mandemaker+61 438 899


In addition, all Pink Lady® Master Licensee should be undertaking background work to ensure appropriate procedures are in place before the event of a crisis.

  • Ensure staff understand need to report any potential issue immediately to CEO or senior management.
  • Monitor issues and incidents as they arise across the industry via social media and the news to detect potential crises before they escalate.
  • Maintain a list of key stakeholders, including suppliers, government departments, customers, media, industry associations, PR agencies, etc.
  • Undertake regular ‘scenario’ planning of potential crises.
  • Prepare holding statements for key issues.

It’s also important to understand any reputation damaging scenarios.

Jeremy advises that when determining if an issue has escalated to a crisis, a bit of common sense is needed.

“If an issue comes up, ask the question: does this have an issue to go beyond just the country? Does it have the potential to go beyond the borders? If it has potential to go beyond the borders, we could make the final call.”