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A controversial collaboration: Scientists team up with the palm oil industry

By: GAR Posted: July 26, 2019

If you can’t beat them, join them. Or so the old adage goes. And that’s exactly what scientists working at the SMART Research Institute (SMATRI) in Indonesia are doing. The oil palm research institute is owned by Golden Agri-Resources (GAR) — part of Sinar Mas, one of the largest palm oil conglomerates in the world.

This unlikely collaboration allows researchers to team up with the oil palm industry for a potential win-win situation: scientists use industry funding carry out important research on biodiversity and the palm industry benefits from these insights in terms of productivity and yield. And some planters are warming to the potential benefits of increased biodiversity — a prospect previously feared.

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Nearly half of companies with deforestation risk aren’t addressing it

By: GAR Posted: July 17, 2019

Many companies have spent the last decade restructuring their supply chains — some to do the right thing, and others to reduce their exposure to climate transition risk.

One of them is “high carbon stock” (HCS) approach, created by palm-oil group Golden Agri Resources Ltd, together with Greenpeace and The Forest Trust, then followed by many groups

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Do smallholders hold the key to sustainable palm oil?

By: GAR Posted: June 24, 2019

While reports of rainforest destruction wrought by large plantation firms continue to emerge, recent studies have also pointed to the role of smallholder farmers—oil palm growers who cultivate palm in an area not exceeding 25 hectares—as growing sources of environmental damage. New data from a satellite monitoring system called Starling, for instance, indicates that rainforest loss in Indonesia is now mainly driven by smallholders nibbling at the edges of forests rather than by industrial-scale tree felling.

Consequently, the industry is now paying concerted attention to the challenges smallholders face in switching to sustainable palm oil, and the solutions that could help these farmers overcome them, says Anita Neville, vice president of corporate communications and sustainability relations at Golden Agri-Resources (GAR), the world’s second largest palm oil producer.

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Palm oil giants unite to tackle human rights challenges in Indonesia

By: GAR Posted: June 21, 2019

In a major collaborative effort to address persistent labour rights issues in Indonesia’s palm oil sector, five industry giants have jointly announced two new pilot projects that seek to change practices around casual labour and improve conditions for women workers.

Golden Agri Resouces and the other 4 palm oil companies united through the Decent Rural Living Initiative (DRLI), whose concessions span thousands of hectares of land in Indonesia and employ a significant portion of the 5.7 million people that work in the country’s palm oil industry.

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Top food firms spot supply-chain risks to forests in real time

By: GAR Posted: June 11, 2019

Led by the Global Forest Watch team at the Washington-based World Resources Institute (WRI), the GFW Pro platform enables commodity producers and buyers, investors and green groups to act faster to protect forests.

More than 80 commodities companies and organisations are already using the website, including Golden Agri-Resources.

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GAR making consistent efforts to protect HCS forests

By: GAR Posted: May 27, 2019

The majority of the large blocks of high carbon stock (HCS) forests spread within three palm oil concessions controlled by Golden Agri-Resources (GAR/Sinarmas Group) is still being protected, as evidenced by a ground-based verification undertaken by foresthints.news (May 24).

The HCS forests in these three concessions in West Kalimantan’s Kapuas Hulu regency were identified and defined by means of a methodology established by an HCS forest team which was formed after the launch of GAR’s Forest Conservation Policy (FCP) in early February 2011.

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Golden Agri Q1 profit up 54.5% to US$18.3m on one-off gain

By: GAR Posted: May 14, 2019

Golden Agri-Resources reported a 54.5 per cent rise in net profit to US$18.3 million for the first quarter ended March 31, from US$11.9 million a year ago.

This was mainly from a US$11.5 million gain on disposal of a subsidiary in Indonesia, the palm oil plantation owner said in a regulatory filing on Tuesday morning. Without it, operating profit fell 22.4 per cent to US$31.7 million from US$40.8 million in the previous year.

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Palm oil titan warns EU limits on biofuel use will backfire

By: GAR Posted: May 6, 2019

Franky Widjaja, head of one of the world’s biggest palm plantation companies, warned that the European Union’s plans to restrict use of the tropical oil in biofuel will misfire as the move will hurt growers and jeopardize future supplies of the vegetable oil.

The world needs palm oil as supplies from alternative oilseeds just won’t be enough to meet rising demand for food and fuel, said the chairman and chief executive officer of Singapore-based Golden Agri-Resources Ltd., and scion of one of Indonesia’s richest families. Buyers and suppliers will probably end up compromising to find a solution to the dispute, he said in an interview.

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Report by TFT and the Danish Institute for Human Rights published today

By: GAR Posted: April 30, 2019

TFT and the Danish Institute for Human Rights (DIHR) today published a report on labour and human rights impacts in Nestlé’s palm oil supply chain in Indonesia. The report, which was commissioned by Nestlé to better understand the existing and potential labour impacts of its palm oil supply chain, is based on findings from field work undertaken by DIHR and TFT in North Sumatra and Jambi, Indonesia. It contains several recommendations to strengthen companies’ and other stakeholders’ commitments to protecting workers and communities. As a result of the report, Nestlé and its main Indonesian supplier Golden Agri-Resources (GAR), whose suppliers were visited for the report, have developed action plans to address the challenges in their supply chains and make improvements in these areas.

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