Consumer power! Procter & Gamble commits to forest-friendly palm oil
by Joao Talocchi
April 8, 2014
About 400,000 emails to Procter & Gamble’s CEO
Thousands of phone calls to P&G offices around the world
Dozens of protests throughout the planet
7300 Sumatran orangutans at risk of being made homeless
As few as 400 tigers at risk of disappearing forever
620,000 hectares of forest potentially destroyed every year.
These numbers encapsulate the tremendous effort of thousands of people around the world to demand Procter & Gamble (P&G) break the link between their products and forest destruction, and the reasons why the company had to it.
And today it happened! P&G finally took the plunge and decided to clean up its act and wash its supply chain clean of bad palm oil.
P&G’s no deforestation policy promises to remove forest destruction from its palm oil supply chain by ensuring all its suppliers guarantee no conversion of peat lands, respect the rights of local communities, and protect high carbon and high conservation value areas. This might sound complicated, but it’s much better than P&G’s previous reliance on a certification scheme that has been proved not to be very effective in stopping forest destruction.
This is a huge shift, and one forced upon the company by you and loads of consumers who don’t want to take deforestation home, or to their showers, like this guy.
Nearly 400,000 people worldwide have demanded the company change its ways. Dozens of protests have taken place, including one at the companys headquarters in Cincinnati, Ohio a peaceful action that grabbed international attention.
The great news is that all this noise got the attention of many other companies! Procter & Gamble joins a group of other palm oil traders and consumers Nestle, LOreal, Colgate-Palmolive, Unilever, Mars, Kellogg, Safeway, Delhaize, Ferrero, GAR and Wilmar in committing to no deforestation. It is an undeniable change of the heart in the global palm oil industry, one provoked by public pressure and a desire to stem the tide of forest destruction.
Of course, however encouraging this news is, there is still work to do. The new P&G policy sets a goal of 2020 for all suppliers to be 100 per cent forest friendly. The few remaining Sumatran tigers in the world do not have another six years to wait around watching irresponsible companies drag their feet.
Greenpeace will be monitoring Procter & Gamble and its suppliers closely, and we will be pushing for urgent action against suppliers, such as Musim Mas and KLK, who continue to be involved in clearing forests and peatlands. Because Greenpeace is independent and has offices around the world including in Indonesia this is something we are well equipped and ready to do.
By taking action with Greenpeace, you are helping transform the palm oil industry. Together, we can continue to further progress until the entire industry has shifted to responsibly-sourced palm oil. People power and public pressure are the best tools we have to make that possible.
But for now, take a moment to celebrate!
This has been a great ride. Today’s commitment by one of the world’s largest consumer goods companies is not something we see everyday.
And there’s more to come! Just take a look at our Tiger Challenge. Who do you think is next? 😉