More than 8,900 independent smallholders to be trained in good agricultural practice as part of Cargill’s commitments to smallholder inclusion
Jakarta, 30 September 2020 – Cargill has signed an agreement with IDH, The Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH) to support sustainable palm oil production by independent smallholders in Indonesia. The aim is to increase productivity in approximately 16,600 ha of smallholder plantations in the provinces of West Kalimantan and South Sumatra for the benefit of more than 8,900 independent smallholders.
The partnership expects to increase the farmers’ yields from the current annual average of 14 tons of fresh fruit bunches (FFB) per hectare to at least 20 tons/hectare, while upholding the environmental requirements for sustainable palm oil certification. The plantations are located in villages surrounding Cargill’s PT Poliplant Sejahtera (PSA) and PT Harapan Sawit Lestari (HSL) in Ketapang, West Kalimantan, as well as PT Hindoli in Musi Banyuasin, South Sumatra. The project aims to improve independent smallholders’ livelihoods sustainably by balancing economic interests and environmental protection.
In collaboration with their implementation partners Bentang Kalimantan and Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil Farmers Forum (FORTASBI), over the next two years, Cargill and IDH will provide training on Good Agriculture Practices and Sustainability Principles. Cargill is already operating a similar partnership with 21,000 smallholders in South Sumatra and West Kalimantan and will bring its knowledge and experience into this new initiative.
In addition to Good Agriculture Practices, the program will also provide training in critical areas such as participatory mapping, management of high-conservation and high-carbon stock areas and waste management. The partners will ensure that no fires are set to clear land or open new land in forested or peatland areas.
This project also supports the National Action Plan for Indonesia’s Sustainable Palm Oil by improving independent smallholders’ capacity to achieve Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil (ISPO) certification and Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certification. Through ISPO, smallholders’ legality such as Cultivation Registration Certificate (STDB) will be addressed, while RSPO will ensure the smallholders productivity can be enhanced to meet Independent Smallholders Standard (RISS) sustainability P&C.
“We support sustainability transformation by co-financing and implementing sustainable action plans since it is a crucial component for long term growth. This commitment is to ensure all the activities to be undertaken will contribute to leveraging positive social and environmental impacts in these jurisdictions in West Kalimantan and South Sumatra. Cargill shares these same values, and this is very important to us as it allows us to collaborate to maintain environmental sustainability.”
Good agricultural practices have always been the cornerstone of our plantation operations. We implement the practices in all operational activities and extend these to our related stakeholders, such as smallholder partners. Our partnership with smallholders encourages the adoption of sustainable plantation standards. We are committed to protecting the environment and improving the livelihood of communities where we operate while meeting the increasing demand for sustainable palm oil.
Richard added that Cargill commits to a transparent, traceable, and sustainable palm oil supply chain by adhering to “No Deforestation, No Peat and No Exploitation” (NDPE) policy. Cargill’s policy covers ensuring conservation of forests, respecting the rights of workers, indigenous peoples and local communities, improving the livelihood of smallholders, upholding high standards of transparency through reporting of traceability, time-bound implementation plans, resolving grievances and achieving third-party verified policy compliance. Cargill works to ensure that all palm products that Cargill produces, trades or processes are in line with these commitments.