‘Iceland has concluded that removing palm oil is the only way it can offer its customers a guarantee that its products do not contain palm oil from forest destruction. This decision is a direct response to the palm oil industry’s failure to clean up its act.
‘As global temperatures rise from burning forests, and populations of endangered species continue to dwindle, companies using agricultural commodities like palm oil will come under increasing pressure to clean up their supply chains. Many of the biggest consumer companies in the world have promised to end their role in deforestation by 2020. Time is running out not just for these household brands but for the wildlife, the climate and everyone who depends on healthy forests for their survival.’
Executive director of Greenpeace UK
The Indonesian Ministry of Forestry indicates 2.7 million hectares of deforestation between 2012 and 2015 – that’s equivalent to a football pitch every 25 seconds.
In 2010, members of the Consumer Goods Forum (CGF) pledged to do their bit to protect forests and limit climate change, with a clear commitment to clean up global commodity supply chains by 2020. Yet with less than two years to go before the deadline, Greenpeace found little progress had been made.
Pressure from Greenpeace
At the start of 2018, Greenpeace challenged 16 leading members of the CGF to demonstrate progress by disclosing the mills that produced their palm oil, and the names of the producer groups that controlled those mills. Publishing mill data would show whether brands had companies involved in forest destruction in their supply chains – a vital first real step towards eliminating it.
Under pressure from Greenpeace and other NGOs, 11 brands have now made steps towards transparency. General Mills, Mars, Mondelēz, Nestlé, Procter & Gamble, Reckitt Benckiser, Unilever and ColgatePalmolive published in time for Greenpeace’s latest report, Moment of Truth. Ferrero, PepsiCo and PZ Cussons published shortly afterwards.
The others – Hershey, Kellogg’s, Kraft Heinz, Johnson & Johnson and Smucker’s – have so far failed to take even this basic step.
The next step would be for brands to remove suppliers, producers and traders known to be destroying rainforest from their supply chains, and then to take responsibility for investigating the remaining producer groups to identify any that are clearing rainforests or peatlands, or exploiting workers or local communities.
Click here to find out more about the brands failing to act on palm oil.