Embattled palm oil company seeks redemption from certification body

mongabay.com
October 30, 2010



Golden Agri-Resources (GAR) and its subsidiaries, Indonesia-based PT Sinar Mas Agro Resources & Technology (SMART) and PT Ivo Mas Tunggal, had submitted plans for coming into compliance with the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil, a certification body for "greener" palm oil, reports Dow Jones.

SMART had been threatened with expulsion from RSPO following revelations that it engaged in clearing of natural forests and peatlands, failed to secure proper land-clearing permits, and did not to properly consult with local communities in areas affected by its plantations. The conduct violated RSPO standards and led several major customers, including Unilever, Nestle, Kraft, and Burger King, to suspend buying from SMART.

SMART's progress toward compliance will be monitored by the RSPO's grievance panel.


Cleared peatland - as shown here in PT Kartika Prima Cipta's palm oil concession close to Lake Sentarum National Park, West Kalimantan. © Rante/Greenpeace
"The Panel has evaluated the companies’ responses, and considers them acceptable at this stage of the Grievance Procedure," read a statement issued by GAR. "The Panel will monitor progress on the agreed action plans on a quarterly basis, with an initial progress report scheduled to be received on 15 Jan 2011."

GAR, which isn't an RSPO member itself, has been asked to apply for membership by the panel. GAR has 433,000 hectares of oil palm plantations.





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CITATION:
mongabay.com (October 30, 2010).

Embattled palm oil company seeks redemption from certification body.

http://news.mongabay.com/2010/1029-gar_smart_palm_oil_rspo.html