Palm Oil Innovation Group Brings to Market Third Party Verified Responsible Palm Oil

Audits against POIG pilot indicators carried out on three founding growers’ plantations

Amidst the growing debate on responsible palm oil production, three leading palm oil producers have sought to demonstrate what is possible. Palm Oil Innovation Group (POIG) grower members Agropalma and DAABON as well as founding member New Britain Palm Oil[1] successfully carried out verification audits to the POIG Charter requirements and pilot indicators, which outline robust requirements for verifying that palm oil is not linked to deforestation, expansion on peatlands, and human and labour rights violations.

The purpose of the audits was to assess compliance of the producers with the POIG Charter as well as trial the pilot indicators, and the audits were successful in both aims. All three companies – Agropalma, DAABON, and New Britain Palm Oil – were found to be aligned to the POIG Charter as there were no critical non-compliances with the pilot indicators, and the feedback from audits has been integrated into a formal indicator revision process. The revised indicators are now available for public consultation until 4 September 2015.

As a growing number of companies throughout the supply chain commit to decouple their palm oil production, consumption, and trading from deforestation, from expansion on carbon-rich peatlands, and from human and labour rights violations, POIG is the only avenue for third-party verification of those requirements to date. The POIG Charter and indicators build on the existing RSPO standards, and have now reached the next step of demonstrating that verified compliance with POIG standards is possible.  Our challenge to the RSPO is for it to adopt these innovations into its own standards and auditing procedures.

“With POIG 3rd party verification, for the first time there is now the chance to source responsible palm oil that we know doesn’t come from deforestation, peatland clearance, or exploitation. This move by POIG gives the option to the many major consumer brands and retailers that have made strong commitments to end deforestation and exploitation to use credible palm supply chains to source directly from POIG verified producers. This is a huge step forward in the quest to transform the palm oil industry” said Grant Rosoman from Greenpeace.

[1] New Britain Palm Oil is a founding member of the Palm Oil Innovation Group, and carried out a successful verification audit against the POIG Charter requirements and pilot indicators in October 2014. In February 2015 NBPOL was acquired by Sime Darby Bhd, and POIG is hopeful that Sime Darby will embrace the responsible palm oil innovations demonstrated by NBPOL by applying to join POIG itself.

To download the statement click here.

For further reference, the revised POIG Charter indicators, the Verification Reports, and Producer Innovations Profiles are available here.