As part of their renewed plans to make their business and production policies completely sustainable by 2016, Asian Agri and Apical Group – two of the most powerful and important companies belonging to the RGE Group led by renowned entrepreneur and philanthropist Sukanto Tanoto – have joined The Forest Trust (TFT) in a partnership aiming to improve their approach toward sustainability and protecting the environment.
Following the Sustainability Pledge
As of 2014, the two companies have pledged to fully trace their supply chain to discover any discrepancies and make sure they can integrate with the requirements of adhering to the strictest sustainability standards. One of the major milestones in this regard was the signing of pledges to protect high conservation value and high carbon stock locations and peatlands.
As an addition to these initiatives, both companies have also renewed their sustainability policies and have embarked on a painstaking journey to map all their supply chains. They also try to keep in close touch with stakeholders and mill suppliers to ensure all standards of the Sustainability Policy are being implemented.
Both groups maintain that sustainability is a key factor that plays a major role in their policies and their quest for advancing business for themselves and the independent smallholders they support. As such, the new partnership with TFT – a global non-profit organization supporting environmental friendly approaches in business and industry supply chains – is an important step forward in this plan.
What Does the New Partnership Mean?
TFT is expected to provide assistance in supporting the goal of mapping supply chains and gradually implementing the sustainability policies throughout all the areas where Apical and Asian Agri run their business. This will include training the companies’ employees to adhere to the compliance of the new sustainability policy throughout the supply base, and to achieve efficient grievance resolution.
The partnership also has the role of reaffirming RGE‘s commitment to reduce deforestation as much as possible and to help smallholders improve their quality of life and ability to run their own independent businesses in a responsible manner.
Finally, this is also an important step for developing sound solutions to eliminate complex environmental and supply related problems on the ground, and for Asian Agri, it also represents a step in the right direction for obtaining RSPO and ISPO certification by the beginning of 2016.
Essentially, through this new partnership, Asian Agri and Apical are pursuing their goals to reach the next level of sustainability by next year, hoping to enhance the palm oil supply chain traceability and become an example of sustainability for the entire palm oil industry.