Compliance Documentation is Crucial for Supplying Sustainable Palm Oil

  • March 22, 2023
Compliance Documentation is Crucial for Supplying Sustainable Palm Oil

Following the launch of the EU's "Green Deal" in December 2022, an expert on supply chain sustainability is urging food merchants to prioritize third-party verification when utilizing palm oil obtained sustainably.

The purpose of the new rule is to combat worldwide deforestation caused by EU production and consumption. It will guarantee that certain products put on the EU market no longer contribute to deforestation or forest degradation in the EU or elsewhere in the world.

When the document is officially enacted, corporations will have 18 months to comply with the new regulations. To do this, enterprises who put palm oil and lumber, as well as their derivatives, on the EU market or export from it, must undergo stringent due diligence.

Jay Weldon, Business Development Manager at BM TRADA, said, "The continuous presence of deforestation in important supply chains is a major cause for worry and has prompted the need to enhance rules and processes. Consequently, the new EU regulation is a step in the right direction.

"Food and commodity supply chains are complicated and cover several nations; thus, accomplishing the EU's objective will need global cooperation. All parties involved must prioritize sustainable sourcing and manufacturing."

Particularly, palm oil has gotten unfavorable press due to its unsustainable sourcing, which has impacted the biodiversity of nations where it is farmed. Changes in the worldwide oil supply chain have contributed to the product's fast rise in popularity in recent years. Due to geopolitical factors, two of the world's major suppliers of sunflower oil discontinued exporting in 2022. Consequently, several providers have shifted from sunflower oil to palm oil.

"Where palm oil is used, independent third-party certification is essential to demonstrate that a company is using a sustainably sourced product. There is a growing global concern that the food and goods we produce could harm the environment and our society, and consumers are actively seeking solutions. "Sustainable supply chains continue to be essential, and with the fate of the planet in our hands, greater transparency and credibility are essential," adds Weldon.

Considering the changes in the worldwide vegetable oil supply chain, it is impossible to identify alternatives to palm oil, he says. Instead, it is necessary to prioritize responsible sourcing. Here, certification of a sustainable supply chain plays a crucial role. Verification by a third party demonstrates that a supply chain functions ethically and maintains the traceability of goods, demonstrating to consumers, stakeholders, and the general public that items can withstand examination.

BM TRADA defines a sustainable supply chain as one in which the organization, its goods, and its services are reviewed at every step of the procurement cycle in terms of their economic, social, and environmental implications. Using rigorous auditing procedures, retailers may guarantee they are procuring from palm oil sources that adhere to sustainable practices.

Weldon says, "Consumer education must also underlie sustainable palm oil sourcing. Specifically, there seems to be a lack of information about the function of The Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), resulting in consumers shunning any palm oil-containing goods. As stated, this is not practical in the long run owing to supply fluctuations. Instead, consumers should seek for items with a prominent RSPO emblem to ensure that the products they buy do not harm the environment."