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FiBL study: organic palm oil is sustainable

by Leo Frühschütz (comments: 0)

Fruits of oil palm
Fruits of oil palm. Symbolbild © Shutterstock/mosista

The research institute for organic agriculture (Forschungsinstitut für Biologischen Landbau (FiBL) compared organic palm oil with oil from conventional plantations. Organic received the best marks.

In its sustainability assessment study, FiBL visited the major organic palm oil producers Daboon in Colombia, Agropalma in Brazil and the Serendipalm project in Ghana. The scientists analysed various ecological and social aspects and compared them with four conventional palm oil producers in Ghana, one of which was certified according to the Sustainable Palm Oil Standard RSPO (as are the organic producers Daboon and Agropalma). No companies from Indonesia or Malaysia, where most conventional palm oil is produced, were included in the assessment project.

All assessed organic companies “score high in all impact areas: ‘land use’, ‘oil quality’, ‘environmental impact’, and ‘social impact’”, reports FiBL in a news release. Reasons for this are that they are “paying higher (…) prices to their outgrower farmers, making considerable social investments, and relying on organic practices”. FiBL also sees the RSPO certification of the large producers Daboon and Agropalma as an important addition: “while organic certifications boost environmental performance, the RSPO standard provides an interesting incentive to perform well in ‘social accountability’ and ‘transparency’”.


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