Palm oil supplier IOI Loders Croklaan surpassed its goal to increase volumes of certified sustainable palm oil to 30% of total European sales last year – and has certified all its plantations to Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) standards.
The company said certified sustainable palm oil accounted for 34% of its European sales volume in 2013, a total of 348,000 tonnes. In October 2012, it said about 15% of its palm oil sales were from certified sustainable sources.
IOI Loders Croklaan sustainability director Ben Vreeburg said in a statement that the company was pleased to have exceeded its goal, as it was “very committed in stimulating the buying of certified palm oil”.
“We expect a continuous increase of RSPO certified palm oil in 2014,” he said. “This is due to a growing belief that sustainable palm oil is the right thing to buy.”
Vreeburg said that demand had been growing for traceable supply, and new EU labelling legislation, which will require food companies to specify palm oil in ingredients lists, was another key factor.
The company told FoodNavigator that it had not yet set a definite goal for increasing sustainable volumes in 2014, but expected about half of total volume sold in Europe this year to come from sustainable sources.
"The market determines the speed of uptake," it said, adding that demand is highest in Europe, but only about 8% of its US sales volumes are certified sustainable, while demand from South East Asia is 'limited'.
The company sources most of its certified sustainable palm oil from its parent company, IOI Group in Malaysia, one of the founding members of the RSPO.
IOI Loders Croklaan first offered RSPO-certified palm oil to the European market in 2010. Since 2011, the company has been able to deliver all of its products according to the RSPO mass balance system, which allows suppliers to combine some segregated RSPO certified oil and some standard oil. This allows users to use the RSPO trademark (with the word ‘Mixed’) and the claim: ‘Contributes to the production of certified sustainable palm oil’.
IOI Loders Croklaan Europe also offers products that are certified according to the stricter RSPO segregated system, which means the oil must be traceable right along the supply chain back to certified plantations.
The RSPO aims to bring together palm oil firms and conservation groups and certifies oil that has not been grown on land deforested to produce the crop, among other criteria.