Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil’s revised Principles & Criteria makes explicit reference to human rights & UN Guiding Principles

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Article
2 May 2013

Carbon, business ethics and human rights included in the sustainable palm oil agenda

Author: Rikke Netterstrom, CSR Asia

…[M]embers of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) voted with a vast majority to raise the bar for their certification standard, the RSPO Principles & Criteria (P&C)…[s]takeholders are already arguing over the merits of the revision: Greenpeace calls the revision ‘Too little too late, while the Malaysian Star reports that growers are disappointed with the RSPO, and WWF takes a more positive view...[T]he revised P&C go far beyond incremental changes, and introduces…significant additions: The first…is carbon…The second significant…addition is business ethics…[s]takeholders are already arguing over the merits of the revision: Greenpeace calls the revision ‘Too little too late, while the Malaysian Star reports that growers are disappointed with the RSPO, and WWF takes a more positive view...A third addition…is the inclusion of an explicit reference to Human Rights and the UN Guiding Principles...It remains to be seen whether this adds anything substantial to the existing criteria which already include the most material human rights issues on customary right, Free Prior Informed consent and ILO-style core labour standards...[M]y assessment is that the Taskforce which developed the RSPO P&C has indeed found a compromise which is robust enough to keep the standard credible in the marketplace, whilst not creating to vast barriers for growers to stay on track to certification. [also mentions Golden Agri Resources, REA Holdings, NBPOL]

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Article
25 April 2013

[PDF] Principles and Criteria for the Production of Sustainable Palm Oil 2013

Author: Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil

Sustainable palm oil production is comprised of legal, economically viable, environmentally appropriate and socially beneficial management and operations. This is delivered through the application of the following set of Principles and Criteria, and the accompanying Indicators and Guidance. The first set of Principles & Criteria, Indicators and Guidance (P&C 2007) have been applied since November 2007. These had been subject to trial implementation from November 2005 to November 2007 and in a number of countries to a subsequent process of National Interpretation. After five years of application by RSPO members, P&C 2007 were reviewed in 2012-2013 by the RSPO Principles and Criteria Review Taskforce.

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