Jakarta, 22 November 2023 – Golden Agri-Resources (GAR), a leading global agribusiness and palm oil producer, is pleased to announce that the first association of independent farmers under its Sawit Terampil programme has achieved Roundtable Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certification, marking a significant milestone in the company’s efforts to enhance supply chain transformation and promote sustainable palm oil practices among smallholders.
The Perkumpulan Sejahtera Pelita Nusantara (PSPN) a group of 270 smallholder farmers based in North Aceh, is the first smallholder collective under the Sawit Terampil programme to receive RSPO certification. The certification was presented at the RSPO Annual Roundtable Conference on Sustainable Palm Oil (RT2023), taking place in Jakarta, Indonesia from 20-22 November. RSPO Certification assists smallholders in increasing yields, gaining access to international certified sustainable palm oil markets, improving their livelihoods, and lowering the risk of land conversion.
The Sawit Terampil programme is a comprehensive capacity-building programme designed to provide independent smallholders with the knowledge and skills they need to improve their productivity and sustainability practices that will improve their livelihoods. It empowers smallholders through group coaching and individual guidance to help them implement good agricultural practices (GAP) and manage their plantation sustainably.
“The RSPO certification of Perkumpulan Sejahtera Pelita Nusantara is a testament to the success of the Sawit Terampil programme and our commitment to supporting independent smallholders in Indonesia. We are proud to have played a role in helping these farmers achieve this important milestone, and we remain dedicated to working with them to further enhance their sustainability practices and improve their livelihoods,” said Helena Lumban Gaol, Head of Smallholders Innovation Department, GAR.
RSPO certification is a globally recognised standard that demonstrates that palm oil has been produced in a sustainable and responsible manner. Guntur Cahyo Prabowo, Head of Smallholders, Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), said, “RSPO certification is a critical step towards sustainability in the palm oil industry. It not only aligns with global sustainability standards but also enhances market access and competitiveness for smallholders. We commend GAR’s commitment and dedication to sustainable practices through their Sawit Terampil programme. We encourage all palm oil sector players to continue to play a pivotal role in advancing the sector towards a more sustainable future.”
Sudikan, Head of Cooperative at Perkumpulan Sejahtera Pelita Nusantara, North Aceh, expressed, “On behalf of my association, I would like to express our appreciation for being able to get RSPO certification after being trained through the Sawit Terampil programme. This recognition motivates us to continue implementing sustainable practices that not only benefit our farms but also contribute to a more sustainable palm oil industry.”
Smallholders are key to the broader supply chain transformation
Smallholders play a significant part in the palm oil supply chain in Indonesia. The country is home to 16.38 million hectares (ha) of palm oil plantations. More than 40 per cent of Indonesia’s palm oil plantations, or 4.5 million hectares, are managed by more than 2.7 million independent smallholders, making this group an essential engine driving change in line with the goals of global accords such as the Agriculture Sector Roadmap to 1.5oC and the transformation of the global supply chain to meet global requirements, such as complying with European Union Deforestation-Free Regulation (EUDR).
Fauzan Kurniawan, Head of Supplier Transformation, GAR said, “While we celebrate the accomplishments of the 270 farmers who earned certification, it is vital to note that this is just the beginning. We will be supporting more smallholders to become certification-ready in the future.”
Looking ahead, GAR remains committed to expanding the Sawit Terampil programme. The company aims to scale up the initiative to reach a total of 10,000 smallholders trained at Subulussalam and Singkil Aceh, Langkat North Sumatera, Riau and West Kalimantan by 2025. This expansion aligns with the company’s mission to foster supply chain transformation and meet global sustainability requirements.
GAR is a leading fully-integrated agribusiness company. In Indonesia, it manages an oil palm plantation area of 534,456 hectares (including plasma smallholders) as of 30 September 2023. It has integrated operations focused on the technology-driven production and distribution of extensive portfolio of palm-based products throughout its established international marketing network.
Founded in 1996, GAR was listed on the Singapore Exchange in 1999 and has a market capitalisation of US$2.5 billion as of 30 September 2023. Flambo International Limited, an investment company, is GAR’s largest shareholder, with a 50.56 percent stake. In addition, GAR has several subsidiaries, including PT SMART Tbk, which was listed on the Indonesia Stock Exchange in 1992.
As an integrated agribusiness, GAR delivers an efficient end-to-end supply chain, from responsible production to global delivery. In Indonesia, its primary activities include cultivating and harvesting oil palm trees; the processing of fresh fruit bunch into crude palm oil (CPO) and palm kernel; refining CPO into value-added products such as cooking oil, margarine, shortening, biodiesel and oleo-chemicals; as well as merchandising palm products globally. GAR’s products are delivered to a diversified customer base in over 100 countries through its global distribution network with shipping and logistics capabilities, destination marketing, on-shore refining and ex-tank operations. GAR also has complementary businesses such as soybean-based products in China, sunflower-based products in India, and sugar businesses.
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