Palm Oil

  • Deforestation

    General

    Deforestation accounts for 20% of all greenhouse gas emissions. Every minute, tropical rainforest of the size of 50 football fields is destroyed. Whilst the causes of deforestation are complex, it is generally acknowledged that the biggest drivers are the cultivation of soya and oil palm, logging for the production of paper and board and the rearing of cattle. All of these commodities are major ingredients in the supply chains of most consumer goods companies. Our member companies drive the demand for these commodities and have an opportunity to ensure that the sourcing of these ingredients does not contribute to deforestation.
     
    Therefore, in 2010, our Board approved a resolution to achieve zero net deforestation by 2020. We aim to achieve this through the responsible sourcing of these key commodities - soy, palm oil, paper and pulp and beef - so that the sourcing of these key commodities will not deplete tropical rainforests. It’s a big ask, and there is much to be done, but through working collectively in partnership with governments and NGOs, the creation of key documents, important stakeholder meetings and through webinars and other materials, change is taking place.
  • First TFA 2020 Workshop Catalyzes Action to Reduce Global Tropical Deforestation

    Workshop outputs also identified the need to address issues of land rights and resolve land conflicts
     
    JAKARTA, 15th July 2013 – During the first meeting of the Tropical Forest Alliance (TFA) 2020, a public-private partnership established by the U.S. Government and The Consumer Goods Forum (CGF), held in Jakarta, June 27-28, the industry’s leading companies pledged their support to the Alliance’s mission to reduce tropical deforestation associated with the production of global agricultural commodities such as palm oil and pulp & paper. 
     
    The TFA 2020 workshop was opened by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and attended by 300 people, including representatives from the world’s top palm oil and pulp & paper production companies, major buyers, governments and NGOs from 16 countries. 
  • Palm Oil

    General 

    Palm Oil is the most produced vegetable oil in the world in terms of production. Malaysia and Indonesia are leading producers, together accounting for 86% of global production. Although oil palm is a more sustainable producer of vegetable oil than other oil crops, there is a serious concern that the growing demand of palm oil for food and biofuel could lead to rapid and ill-managed expansion of palm oil production - resulting in serious deforestation.
     
    A wide array of parties, including palm oil producers, processors, consumer good companies, retailers, banks and NGOs, are therefore working together with the objective to promote the growth and use of sustainable palm oil. ‘Sustainable’ in this context implies that while using palm forests and palm forests lands, a balance is maintained between society’s demand for forest products and benefits, while preserving forest diversity, extent and integrity for future generations.
     
    Palm oil is used in a number of products. The oil palm fruit produces two oils - palm oil from the fleshy mesocarp and palm kernel oil from the seed or kernel. Palm oil is used primarily in food products: cooking oil, shortening, margarine, milk fat replacer and cocoa butter substitute. Palm kernel oil is mostly used in the oleochemical industry for making soap, detergent, toiletries and cosmetics.
     

    Progress

    Our Member companies will increase their support for the use of certified sustainable palm oil, whether these are in the form of Green Palm certificates or segregated, identity preserved supplies. As part of this, we  have also published Sustainable Palm Oil Sourcing Guidelines in 2015. The Guidelines are intended to assist companies in designing their own policies for sourcing palm oil more sustainably, and were developed by CGF retailer and manufacturer members, with input from standard setting organisations, NGOs, banks and suppliers. The Guidelines will serve as a ‘live’ tool for companies sourcing palm oil as the document will be updated as the landscape evolves. 
     
     
  • Q1 2017 - Sustainability Update: CGF Participates in Guardian Live Chat Debate on Sustainable Palm Oil


    CGF Participates in Guardian Live Chat Debate on Sustainable Palm Oil

     

    Earlier this week, CGF Environmental Sustainability Director, Ignacio Gavilan, participated in a live chat debate on sustainable palm oil. The debate was held by Guardian Sustainable Business and was supported by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil. Participants included representatives from the World Wildlife Fund, The Forest Trust, Mondelez and more.

     

  • Q2 2017 - Sustainability Update: Blog: Implementing and Scaling up the CGF Zero Net Deforestation Commitment


    [BLOG] Implementing and Scaling up the CGF Zero Net Deforestation Commitment

     

    Business awareness of deforestation-related challenges has dramatically increased over the past years, as demonstrated by the growing number of business commitments to reducing deforestation impacts in their commodity supply chains. A recent report by Supply Change highlights that the number of companies that made deforestation related commitments grew by 22% in 2016 alone, with a total of 447 companies and 760 commitments.

     

     
  • Q4 2016 - Sustainability Update: CGF Director Key Panellist at 2nd Regional Workshop of Africa Palm Oil Initiative


     
    CGF Director Key Panellist at 2nd Regional Workshop of Africa Palm Oil Initiative
     
    Our Environmental Sustainability Director, Ignacio Gavilan, was pleased to participate in the 2nd Regional Workshop of Africa Palm Oil Initiative held in Abidjan, Ivory Coast last week. The workshop was a joint project between Proforest and TFA 2020 and focused on finalising the text of the Regional Accord as well as fostering further dialogue around key issues facing sustainable palm oil production and use in the region. 
     
  • Q4 2016 - Sustainability Update: CGF Joins Sustainable Palm Oil Discussion at European Palm Oil Conference


     
    CGF Joins Sustainable Palm Oil Discussion at European Palm Oil Conference

    The CGF environmental sustainability team is pleased to speak at this year’s European Palm Oil Conferencetaking place on the 5th and 6th October in Warsaw, Poland. This event will be focused on the functional role of palm oil in food, and will also include the nutritional and sustainability aspects. The conference promises to offer new insights, ideas and sustainable solutions for food applications.
     
  • Ten International Banks Commit to Finance Sustainable Agricultural Commodities by 2020

    LONDON and PARIS, 6th July 2014 - Standard Chartered Bank today become the tenth bank to formally adopt the Soft Commodities Compact, which aligns the banking industry with The Consumer Goods Forum’s resolution to help achieve zero net deforestation in their supply chains by 2020. 
     
    The announcement was made on Friday at a meeting in London hosted by Paul Polman, Chief Executive of Unilever, and The Prince of Wales, who brought together business leaders to move from commitments to action on removing deforestation from commodity supply chains.
     
    Last year the volume of global palm oil production covered by corporate commitments to ‘zero deforestation’ rose to over 90%. The case for banks to support their consumer goods clients in implementing commitments that remove deforestation from their supply chains is therefore stronger than ever. 
     
    Standard Chartered’s decision to adopt the Compact means that around 20% of the market for international financing of agricultural commodities is now aligned behind the Compact’s goal. 
     
    The Soft Commodities Compact was developed by the Banking Environment Initiative (BEI), a Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership platform, and The Consumer Goods Forum (CGF), a body representing 400 of the world’s biggest consumer goods retailers and manufacturers, with over $3 trillion in combined procurement power. 
     
    Mark Devadason, Global Head of Sustainability at Standard Chartered said, “We believe adopting the Soft Commodities Compact, a client-led initiative, will help us support our clients to be here for good by transforming soft commodity supply chains to support zero net deforestation. This will promote economic and social development, and build on the outcomes we are already achieving through membership of the Banking Environment Initiative”. 
     
    Jeff Seabright, Chief Sustainability Officer at Unilever said, “There is a compelling business case for driving deforestation out of our supply chains. Not only does it reduce reputational risk and safeguard our future licence to operate, but through deep collaboration with both our suppliers and tropical forest countries, we can increase yields, improve livelihoods and secure sustainable supplies of agricultural raw materials into the future – all the while mitigating our contribution to climate change. The financial sector plays a critical role in enabling such win-win outcomes”.
     
    Commenting on the impact of the Compact, David Nussbaum, WWF-UK Chief Executive said, “Banks can make a difference for the world’s forests. These 10 banks have set the bar for other financial institutions in terms of tackling deforestation – which is essential to avoid dangerous climate change.  Action on deforestation includes requiring banking clients at least to use credible third party certifications for deforestation risk factors, for example Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) or Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certification. We call for all banks and investors to apply similarly robust policies across their business”. 
     
    Ignacio Gavilan, Director, Sustainability at The Consumer Goods Forum said, “The global challenges business and society face today are too complex for any one player to solve by themselves, so it’s important to us that the consumer goods industry works with key intermediaries in the economy such as international banks. The BEI is providing impressive leadership by changing the norms for how banks integrate a strategic response to deforestation into their financing policies and products such as trade finance solutions”.
     
    Andrew Voysey, Director of Finance Sector Platforms at CISL said: “On a daily basis we hear just how far the banking industry has to go to regain trust that it is serving society’s best interests. CISL’s work with banks focuses on enabling practical solutions. With the Soft Commodities Compact we are seeing new business norms and financing solutions emerge from the banking industry that help people and businesses respond to the global challenge of feeding a growing population without compromising the natural resources that communities all around the world rely on”.
     
    -- ENDS --
     
    Media Contacts:
     
    University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL), for Banking Environment Initiative
    Gemma Pryor, Media Consultant, CISL
    Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Mob: +44 7968 318 149
     
    The Consumer Goods Forum
    Lee Green, Senior Manager of Communications, The Consumer Goods Forum
    email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Office: +33-1-82-00-95-70
     
    Notes to Editors:
    • Nine banks have already adopted the Compact: BEI Members Barclays, Deutsche Bank, Lloyds Bank, RBS, Santander and Westpac as well as BNP Paribas, Rabobank and UBS, who are not BEI Members.
    • Banks who have adopted the Compact make two principal commitments: 
    1. to finance the transformation of supply chains by working with CGF member companies to identify interventions to support the growth of commodity production meeting the CGF’s required zero net deforestation standards.
    2. to raise industry-wide banking standards by aligning the provision of their services with the procurement policies being implemented by the CGF.
    • The Compact is available to download here.
    • The first tangible output of the Compact has been the Sustainable Shipment Letter of Credit, which is a trade finance solution backed by the IFC which enables banks to reduce the cost of importing sustainably produced palm oil into emerging markets, where the premium associated with sustainable production methods can be a barrier to uptake. 
     
    About the Banking Environment Initiative (BEI)
    The Chief Executives of some of the world’s largest banks created the Banking Environment Initiative (BEI) in 2010. Its mission is to lead the banking industry in collectively directing capital towards environmentally and socially sustainable economic development. The group comprises 11 leading banks with over US$ 10 trillion of assets. Its members come from different business models and markets, but share a belief in the need for bold new leadership in directing capital towards the business models that the 21st century demands. At the heart of the group’s vision lies a simple thesis: banks work for their clients and an initiative like this will only work if it is aligned with their interests and vice versa. The BEI achieves its mission by focusing on topics where industry-wide action is needed, working in partnership with its customer base by bringing independent thinking to bear on the issues and through the active leadership of its Chief Executives. For more information, please visit: www.cisl.cam.ac.uk/banking. 
     
    About The Prince of Wales.
    For over 40 years The Prince of Wales has encouraged businesses, charities, governments and other organizations to help promote sustainable ways of living and working. 
     
    The Prince of Wales continues to address many of today’s most significant environmental challenges, including climate change, sustainable agriculture, fisheries and depletion of Natural Capital, through the work of various initiatives and projects. This is often in partnership with governments, the private sector and non-governmental organizations. The Prince is Founder, Patron or President of leading sustainability charities and initiatives like the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL), Accounting For Sustainability (A4S)  
    and the International Sustainability Unit (I.S.U).  
     
    For more information about The Prince of Wales, please visit www.princeofwales.gov.uk or contact the Clarence House Communications team on 0207 024 5510. 
     
     
    About Cambridge and CISL
    For 800 years, the University of Cambridge has fostered leadership, ideas and innovations that have benefited and transformed societies. The University now has a critical role to play to help the world respond to a singular challenge: how to provide for as many as nine billion people by 2050 within a finite envelope of land, water and natural resources, whilst adapting to a warmer, less predictable climate. 
     
    Within the University, the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL) empowers business and policy leaders to make the necessary adjustments to their organisations, industries and economic systems in light of this challenge. By bringing together multidisciplinary researchers with influential business and policy practitioners across the globe, it fosters an exchange of ideas across traditional boundaries to generate new, solutions-oriented thinking. His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales is the Patron of CISL and plays an active role in its work.
     
    A particular strength of CISL is its ability to engage actors across business, finance and government. With deep policy connections across the EU and internationally, dedicated platforms for the banking, investment and insurance industries, and executive development programmes for senior decision-makers, it is well-placed to support leadership in the real economy.
     
    About The Consumer Goods Forum
    The Consumer Goods Forum (“CGF”) is a global, parity-based industry network that is driven by its members to encourage the global adoption of practices and standards that serves the consumer goods industry worldwide. It brings together the CEOs and senior management of some 400 retailers, manufacturers, service providers, and other stakeholders across 70 countries, and it reflects the diversity of the industry in geography, size, product category and format. Its member companies have combined sales of EUR 2.5 trillion and directly employ nearly 10 million people, with a further 90 million related jobs estimated along the value chain. It is governed by its Board of Directors, which comprises 50 manufacturer and retailer CEOs.
     
    For more information, please visit: www.theconsumergoodsforum.com.
     
     
  • The Consumer Goods Forum Publishes Palm Oil Sourcing Guidelines

    Consumer Goods Industry’s First Ever Set of Sustainable Palm Oil Sourcing Guidelines to Help Drive Implementation of ‘Zero Net Deforestation’ Resolution
     
    PARIS, 11th August 2015 – The Consumer Goods Forum (“CGF”) today announced publication of the first-ever ‘Sustainable Palm Oil Sourcing Guidelines’ (the “Guidelines”). This publicly available document is an important step in helping the consumer goods and retail industries to achieve zero net deforestation by 2020, as outlined in the CGF’s Deforestation ResolutionCGF Palm Oil Sourcing Guidelines
     
    The Guidelines are intended to assist companies in designing their own policies for sourcing palm oil more sustainably, and were developed by CGF retailer and manufacturer members, with input from standard setting organisations, NGOs, banks and suppliers. The Guidelines will serve as a ‘live’ tool for companies sourcing palm oil as the document will be updated as the landscape evolves.  
     
    A key feature of the Guidelines is a two-stage approach that lays out steps to enable companies (from any industry) to start the journey to sustainable palm oil, together with further steps necessary for a fully sustainable palm oil supply.   
     
    Ignacio Gavilan, Director of Sustainability at The Consumer Goods Forum, said, “The publication of the ‘Sustainable Palm Oil Sourcing Guidelines’ is another important step forward for our industry, and it’s a testament to what can result from effective cross-sector collaboration. This isn’t just a document from The Consumer Goods Forum, it’s a document that is built on a global industry’s commitment to achieve zero net deforestation by 2020, and several stakeholders have been involved in getting it to this point”.
     
    Palm Oil is the most widely used vegetable oil in the world. Malaysia and Indonesia are leading producers accounting for 86% of global production. Although potentially one of the more sustainable vegetable oils, there is serious concern that rapid expansion of palm oil plantations has on occasions resulted in loss of valuable tropical forests and social conflict. 
     
    Irene Rosenfeld, Chairman and CEO at Mondelēz International and CGF Board member, said, “I urge CGF members and other companies sourcing palm oil to adopt these guidelines to help make sustainable palm oil the mainstream option”. 
     
    Mike Barry, Director, Sustainable Business (Plan A) at Marks and Spencer and Co-Chair of the CGF's Sustainability Pillar, said, "These guidelines give CGF members a roadmap to sustainable palm oil sourcing.  They enable all companies, multinational and local, to play their part in delivering the CGF commitment to achieve zero net deforestation by 2020".
     
    While the CGF is proud of the Guidelines, it also appreciates that this is just a first step and that much more is yet to be done. The CGF will continue to work collaboratively with palm oil producers, processors, banks and NGOs, to promote the growth and use of sustainable palm oil.
     
     
    A series of webinars will be organised later this year to walk members through the Guidelines and answer any questions.
     
    -- ENDS --
     
    About The Consumer Goods Forum
    The Consumer Goods Forum (“CGF”) is a global, parity-based industry network that is driven by its members to encourage the global adoption of practices and standards that serves the consumer goods industry worldwide. It brings together the CEOs and senior management of some 400 retailers, manufacturers, service providers, and other stakeholders across 70 countries, and it reflects the diversity of the industry in geography, size, product category and format. Its member companies have combined sales of EUR 2.5 trillion and directly employ nearly 10 million people, with a further 90 million related jobs estimated along the value chain. It is governed by its Board of Directors, which comprises 50 manufacturer and retailer CEOs.
     
    For further information, please contact:
     
    Ignacio Gavilan
    Director, Sustainability
    The Consumer Goods Forum
    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
     
    Lee Green
    Senior Manager, Communications
    The Consumer Goods Forum
    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
     
     
  • The Consumer Goods Forum Statement in Response to Greenpeace’s Campaign on Palm Oil

    PARIS, 10th December 2013
     
    In December 2010, our Board of Directors agreed on behalf of its membership a resolution to mobilise resources within their respective businesses to help achieve zero net deforestation by 2020. This commitment was applauded by NGOs, governments and other partners. 
     
    More than 70% of the 50 companies, which make up the Board of the CGF and for whom this is relevant, have time bound public targets on deforestation (and more than 80% have public commitments on palm oil). We know, from their public statements, that some of the largest of these companies which account for the bulk of the volumes have made impressive strides towards the goal. 
  • The Sustainable Palm Oil Sourcing Guidelines

    Download the Sustainable Palm Oil Sourcing Guidelines

  • The World Can Have Sustainable Palm Oil

    Today's post comes from Sangeeta Haindl, founder of Serendipity PR & Media Consultancy. It first appeared on JustMeans.com, an online community and publisher of news about corporate social responsibility, sustainability, energy, health, education, technology and innovation. 


     
    Palm oil is the most widely consumed vegetable oil on the planet. It’s estimated that it is used in about half of all packaged products sold in the supermarket from shampoo to ice cream and detergents. It is the most widely consumed vegetable oil because it’s extremely versatile and cheap to grow! However, it also comes at a cost. Palm oil grows in the same area as tropical rainforests, and the uncontrolled clearing of land for conventional oil palm plantations has led to widespread loss of these irreplaceable forests. Plantations have also been connected to the destruction of habitat of endangered species such as orangutans, rhinos, elephants and tigers as well as the displacement of indigenous peoples who have lost their land and livelihoods. Malaysia and Indonesia are the leading producers, accounting for 86 percent of global production.
  • Tropical Forest Alliance 2020 Launches New Website

     
    PARIS, 28th August 2013 –The Tropical Forest Alliance 2020 (TFA 2020), a public-private partnership with the goal of reducing the tropical deforestation associated with key global commodities, such as soy, beef, palm oil, and pulp and paper, today announced a new online home for all the latest news and information about TFA 2020 events and initiatives. 
     
    With emphasis on a clean design and simple navigation, www.tfa2020.com will serve as the only destination stakeholders need to learn more about the work of the TFA 2020, including press announcements, background information, photos and presentations from recent workshops and other great content.