FGV: Eight palm oil mills to be RSPO-certified by year end

-A +A

KUALA LUMPUR (Dec 5): Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) expects to obtain the first Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certification for eight of its palm oil mill complexes before the end of 2017.

This is subject to obtaining the necessary clearance from the RSPO audit process.

"FGV is in the process of certifying its palm oil mill complexes to RSPO requirements. FGV plans to be RSPO certified within five years from 2017 to 2021," it said in a statement today.

Since withdrawing its principles and criteria certificate in May 2016, FGV said it and Felda have remained committed to the RSPO certification and taken the necessary measures to ensure that the sustainability aspects of the business are continuously monitored and enhanced.

Today, FGGV announced that it has implemented a structured, systematic and customised training programme for its key stakeholders such as Federal Land Development Authority (Felda) employees, Felda settlers, third-party fresh fruit bunch (FFB) suppliers and FGV contractors.

"The objectives of the training programme are in areas of Good Agricultural Practices, improving labour conditions and other sustainability practices throughout FGV’s palm oil value chain," the group said.

FGV group president and chief executive officer Datuk Zakaria Arshad said as part of FGV’s commitment to sustainability and strict criteria imposed by the market to curb deforestation, habitat destruction and labour exploitation, it is imperative that FGV engages with its key stakeholders in the palm oil value chain to keep them abreast with sustainability issues and drive change on the ground, while striving for long-term growth for the industry and community.

In the first phase of the training programme that commenced in October last year up to 2017, FGV focused on a few categories of stakeholder groups, namely Felda employees, Felda settlers and FGV contractors.

FGV said it has also been working closely with the Malaysian Palm Oil Board to train and increase Felda settlers’ knowledge on improving labour practices and Good Agricultural Practices to improve FFB yield, oil extraction rate and other relevant agricultural practices.

“It is absolutely crucial for FGV’s contractors to embark on this sustainability journey with FGV to reap the benefits over the long term. Thus, FGV has performed a series of contractors’ training sessions in Malaysia involving more than 250 contractors on improving labour management practices in 2016 and 2017,” said Zakaria.

More than 7,000 settlers have attended the RSPO and the Malaysian Sustainable Palm Oil awareness programmes. Felda settlers contribute at least 40% of FGV’s FFB supply base to FGV’s 70 mills located all over Malaysia.

FGV shares closed up one sen or 0.56% at RM1.80 today, with 1.67 million shares done, bringing a market capitalisation of RM6.57 billion.