- Malaysian-based IOI Group, one of the world’s largest suppliers of palm oil, was officially suspended, beginning April 4, from the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil, and from carrying the label of certified sustainable palm oil on its products. IOI Group is the holding company of ingredients supplier IOI Loders Croklaan.
- The RSPO received a complaint a year ago in regard to the IOI’s operations in Indonesian Borneo. Three of the company’s subsidiaries are alleged to have violated numerous RSPO standards meant to prevent rainforest destruction and social conflict, and some laws, according to Food Ingredients First.
- On Monday, Unilever, a member of RSPO and one of the world’s largest food and personal care product companies, announced it would phase out IOI Group’s palm oil from its products over the next three months, according to Triplepundit.com.
Six years ago, NGOs filed complaints against this operation, which dragged on due to the RSPO’s slow system. Triplepundit.com said Greenpeace has stated that companies such as Mondelez and Mars have stricter standards than those of the RSPO. The RSPO claims to have certified about 21% of the global production of palm oil.
Sustainable palm oil sourcing is of major importance to food companies. In addition to Unilever, which has its own sustainable palm oil policy, other corporations have made commitments throughout their own supply chains. Last year, Post Holdings Inc. announced it will source 100% sustainable palm oil by this December. ADM has pledged to fight deforestation along with its palm oil suppliers. The year before, Cargill, Wilmar and Golden Agri-Resource pledged to work together to stop deforestation.