Sime Darby – Green Tigers Index Rankings

SCORE

56

Malaysia-based Sime Darby is one of the world’s largest palm oil growers. There has not been recent public evidence of large-scale deforestation by Sime Darby in Asia, and Sime has made significant progress in achieving RSPO certification for its Southeast Asian operations. However, NGOs have raised serious concerns about the impact on forests and local communities of its operations in Liberia. The company has acquired a 63-year lease for 311,187 hectares of land in Liberia, with 220,000 hectares slated for development. Sime Darby has conducted some mitigation activities, but its plans for addressing deforestation and exploitation of communities in additional expansion remain unclear. More broadly, the company has led resistance to industry adoption of a “No Deforestation, No Peat, No Exploitation” policy. Instead, Sime Darby has led an initiative to create a so-called palm oil manifesto that would attempt to change the definition of what forests merit protection under palm oil industry forest conservation policies.

While the Wilmar and GAR policies, for instance, adopt a scientifically grounded approach that allows development on grassland, and young scrubland, but protects HCS forests, this Sime Darby–led initiative merely authorizes a study that would try to redefine protected forest by allowing potentially many more categories of land to be cleared. NGOs, consumer companies, and investors have repeatedly urged manifesto signatories to institute a moratorium on clearance of HCS forests while this study is under way, but the manifesto’s signatories have refused to do so. As a result, Sime Darby and other signatories have given themselves a free pass to “study and log.” In Sime Darby’s case, it is expected that they see this effort as a way to give themselves more flexibility to clear forest in Africa.

POLICY

1.A

The company has a forest policy for palm oil produced, traded or processed that applies to its global operations including all subsidiaries and joint ventures. The company also requires its suppliers to follow the policy.

YES

1.B

The policy excludes the sourcing of  raw materials or products originating from natural forests including both primary and secondary forests.

NO

1.C

The policy specifically excludes the sourcing of raw materials or products originating from High conservation Value (HCV) areas.

YES

1.D

The palm oil policy specifically excludes development on peat soil regardless of depth.

YES

1.E

The palm oil policy excludes the sourcing  of raw materials and products from developments in High Carbon Stock (HCS) Forests.

YES

1.F

The palm oil policy excludes the sourcing of raw materials and products from lands where burning has been used to clear vegetation.

YES

1.G

The company has pledged to use (or uses) a third party for compliance verification of its policy.

NO

1.H

The company has developed and published a non-compliance procedure that outlines thresholds for the suspension and/or cancellation of contracts with suppliers in breach of the policy.

NO

1.I

The company has committed to developing a traceability system that documents palm oil back to the plantation of origin within its entire supply chain.

NO

1.J

The company specifically commits (and requires its suppliers to do so) to respect the rights of Indigenous and local communities to give or withhold their Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) to development on their lands.

YES

1.K

The company has programs that support small holders in its supply chain with support that goes beyond purely financial considerations and the palm oil supply chain but addresses longer term development.

YES

1.L

The company has policy to reduce the environmental and health impacts of chemical pesticides and/or fertilizers.

YES

IMPLEMENTATION & TRANSPARENCY

2.A

Date by which the company aims to achieve full traceability to plantation for its entire supply chain.

NO

2.B

The company or the relevant third party publishes detailed processes and results of the policy verification assessments.

NO

2.C

The company has established and published an accessible and transparent grievance and dispute resolution mechanism.

NO

2.D

The company reports on its progress towards meeting its policy goals at least annually against measurable indicators.

HALF

2.E

The company has published the  names or  detailed locations (that allow for coordinates to be obtained) of all palm oil mills in its supply chain.

YES

3.A

Points are deducted for the following (occurring since January 1, 2015). There is public evidence that since January 1, 2015 the company has in its own operations not met criteria 1.C, 1.D, 1.E or 1.J (or uses palm oil from protected areas). Or the company has sourced from suppliers that have not met these criteria. Or the company had its RSPO license revoked or suspended since that date. Or there is evidence of significant workers rights violations or social conflicts.

NO

See all of the rankings of major palm oil and soy companies on their adherence to forest conservation requirements on the Green Tiger and Green Jaguar index.