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21 August 2014 | Will Green
Personal care company PZ Cussons has announced a “palm oil promise” to eliminate deforestation and exploitation in its supply chain.
The company, behind brands including Imperial Leather, Carex and Original Source, said it will work towards achieving traceability of palm oil supply back to source and commit to no deforestation, no use of toxic chemicals and zero exploitation of workers and local communities.
Launching its PZ Palm Oil Promise the firm said it wanted to “secure a long-term supply of responsible palm oil for its range of personal and home care, beauty and food products” and “engagement with suppliers is essential in making this happen”.
The company said it had become a member of The Forest Trust (TFT) and would work with suppliers in Indonesia and its joint venture operations in Nigeria and Ghana.
Eileen Donnelly, director of sustainability and communications, said: “Through the PZ Palm Oil Promise we have developed what we believe is a vital part of our role as a buyer of responsible palm oil.
“TFT has a strong record of delivery in really understanding the palm oil landscape and helping companies and their suppliers to drive transformation, which for us is ultimately about knowing that all of the palm oil we buy was sourced with respect for people and the environment.”
Meanwhile, US food firm ConAgra Foods has pledged to eliminate palm oil producers who engage in deforestation from its supply chain by December 2015.
The company, estimated to be the 15th largest palm oil consumer globally, follows others in the US who have made similar commitments including Kellogg’s, Mondelez and Safeway.
According to sustainability pressure group Ceres the palm oil industry is worth $44 billion (£26.5 billion) and over the past year suppliers of more than 55 per cent of the world supply have committed to produce or trade deforestation-free oil.