Sinar Mas Achieves New Low

by Rolf Skar

September 27, 2010

Just when you thought things couldn’t get any worse for forest-destroyer Sinar Mas, they did.  The latest news shows Sinar Mas is in jeopardy of being kicked out of a palm oil industry group we didn’t know you could get kicked out of!

In an unprecedented move, the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), has threatened to suspend the membership of Sinar Mas.  In three strongly worded letters to Sinar Mas palm oil subsidiaries (read them here, here and here), the RSPO reprimanded Sinar Mas for trying to greenwash its practices and set a four-week deadline for corrective action to be taken.

Sinar Mas forest destructionThis is not a normal move by the RSPO, a group that has long been perceived as not tough enough on companies that violate its rules.  What inspired them to take this step?  The audit that Sinar Mas itself commissioned to supposedly prove an earlier Greenpeace report wrong.  Once again, the Sinar Mas attempt to deny reality and greenwash its practices has backfired…big time.

Sinar Mas so misrepresented the findings of the audit they commissioned, that the audit company itself had to issue a “clarification” of its findings.  More recently, Burger King, after reviewing the audit, decided to cut its business ties with the company.

Activists take Pizza Hut to task in HonoluluThis is just the latest evidence for companies that care about corporate responsibility that, unless it changes its ways, Sinar Mas palm oil (and paper) should be avoided.  After Burger King dropped Sinar Mas as a customer, activists around the country (like those in Honolulu above) are watching what other fast-food franchises – like Pizza Hut and Dunkin’ Donuts – will do.  Some, present company included, are starting to wonder what they are waiting for.  Time to cut business with forest-destroyers like Sinar Mas and support protections for the Paradise forests!  Our climate and endangered wildlife like orangutans and Sumatran tigers can’t afford to wait.

for the forest,


Rolf Skar

By Rolf Skar

Rolf Skar is the Campaigns Director at Greenpeace USA. Since 2007, Rolf has contributed to international Greenpeace campaigns to stop deforestation in the Canadian boreal forest, the Paradise forests of Southeast Asia, and the Brazilian Amazon.

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