The Thai Palm Oil Industry is ready for sustainable palm oil production – RSPO certification under way in Thailand
The Thai Palm Oil Industry and the RSPO (Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil) are ready for sustainable palm oil production in Thailand. In a joint press conference the Secretary General of RSPO and the Chairman of the 'Thai Oil Palm and Palm Oil Association', the 'Palm Oil Crushing Mill Association', the 'Thai Biodiesel Producer Association' and the 'Palm Oil Refinery Association' announced the approval and publication of the National Interpretation (NI) of the RSPO in Thailand.
The approved Thai NI allows the Thai Palm Oil Industry to certify Palm Oil as sustainable under the RSPO certification scheme. RSPO is supporting environmental, social and economically friendly production of Palm Oil avoiding all negative impacts which put non-sustainable Palm Oil under criticism. The process of the Thai NI development was supported by GIZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft fuer internationale Zusammenarbeit) and funded by the German Federal Ministry of Environment. Mrs. Wiwan Boonya – Chairwoman of the Oil Palm and Palm Oil Association – states that "we are extremely satisfied with the approval of the Thai NI, as we have done this process in a transparent manner, also to include the smallholders of Thailand, which constitute of 98% of the growers."
Sustainability certification under the RSPO allows the Thai Palm Oil Industry to open up new markets, both domestically and internationally. There is an ever increasing demand for sustainable Palm Oil and the Thai Palm Oil Industry is now in a position to deliver sustainable Palm Oil to meet the demands of their customers. Mr. Sanin Triyanond – Chairman of Thai Biodiesel Producer Association – explains that "fulfilling RSPO is becoming a requirement for the Biodiesel Industry in Thailand, as most of our customers are asking for it. We are looking forward to delivering certified biodiesel to them." Mr. Krisada Chavananand – Chairman of the Palm Oil Crushing Mill Association – adds that "also the Palm Oil Crushing Mills are committed towards their customers – such as the Biodiesel producers and refineries in Thailand – to meet the demand of sustainably certified oils." The very first Thai Palm Oil Mill will most likely be certified in 2012, also involving smallholders who must be certified as part of their supply base. The chairman of Palm Oil Refinery Association - Mr. Asanee Mallamphut states that "as all members of the Palm Oil supply chain in Thailand have to rely on smallholders as their supply base, we must make sure that we meet our social responsibility towards the farmers and RSPO certification is helping in this a lot."
Thailand is the third largest producer of Palm Oil in the world. Mr. Darrel Webber – Secretary General of the RSPO – announces that "The readiness of Thailand for Certified Sustainable Palm Oil production is a major step forward in promoting the growth and use of sustainable palm oil towards our goal in transforming markets to make it the norm. The RSPO applauds this progressive milestone which is a result of the commitment and effort of many institutions and individuals in Thailand."