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The journey towards a more sustainable palm oil industry is already taking shape. While we continue to strengthen sustainability practices and increase awareness of Certified Sustainable Palm Oil (CSPO) in more established palm oil producing markets, we look towards the growth and development of newer markets, like Latin America and Africa. The shift in focus to these markets presents a great opportunity; to ‘get things right the first time’. And so far, the first eight months of 2017 are encouraging.
Certified land areas expand with uptake of CSPO
In Latin America there has been a significant increase in the production of RSPO CSPO from January 2017 to date. From 24 mills across Colombia, Guatemala, Honduras, Costa Rica, Ecuador, and Brazil - a record 741,896 tonnes of CSPO was produced; accounting for an impressive 21 percent of total regional output. In Colombia alone, CSPO production increased 17 per cent and the total certified area increased by 33.5 per cent. In Guatemala, the certified area increased by almost 38 per cent.
Similarly in Ghana, CSPO production increased by almost 32 per cent during this period and certified area increased by 22 per cent.
Number of Latin American smallholders expands
The RSPO acknowledges that there’s much work to be done in all producing countries in order to get more smallholders certified. However, it’s a positive outlook for Latin America where the certified area of RSPO smallholders doubled in Guatemala and tripled in Colombia during the past 8 months. A key highlight is that the first group of independent smallholders (ASOCOFOR) were certified in Ecuador last month; a promising sign of the feasibility of certification of independent smallholders in the region.