Global head of the Indonesia forest campaign at Greenpeace International, Bustar Maitar, explained, “This policy commits Cargill to ending its role in deforestation, peat destruction and social exploitation, reflecting the pressure coming from consumer companies like P&G, Unilever, Nestle and others who are acting to cut deforestation from their supply chains. However, while a good policy is a crucial step, only its credible implementation will bring real change to the palm oil industry.”
Cargill’s commitment comes on the heels of the Sustainable Palm Oil Manifesto (SPOM) announcement earlier this month. Cargill’s policy is explicit in its pledge to implement the already established High Carbon Stock Approach, as pioneered by Golden Agri-Resources, The Forest Trust and Greenpeace. This is a critical step to ensure that Cargill’s supply chain will break its links to deforestation.
Greenpeace said it will continue to critically monitor the action plan Cargill is expected to announce at the end of the year, which must include details of how it will put this policy into practice worldwide, including strict implementation deadlines. The organization hopes to see improvements in the areas of Cargill’s protection for food security, including local control and diversity of food production; and information on how this policy will apply to any future plantations Cargill acquires.
Bustar Maitar noted recent research, which found that, “the rate of deforestation in Indonesia is now the highest in the world, surpassing Brazil.” He added, “Palm oil, which is now expanding to threaten forests and local communities in Africa, can bring prosperity and benefits, but only if its done respecting the forests and communities that depend on it.”