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Jakarta Post

`Unacceptable practices' see Unilever end Sinar Mas deal

  • Hans David Tampubolon

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Sat, December 12 2009   /  01:00 pm

Anglo-Dutch company Unilever has suspended all future purchases of palm oil from Indonesia's PT SMART, a subsidiary of the Sinar Mas Group, citing the supplier's failure to meet the "highest possible" sustainability standards. The company said in a statement issued Friday that the suspension would remain in place until SMART could provide verifiable proof that none of its plantations contributed to the destruction of high conservation value forests or expanded into peatlands. Unilever said that over the past 18 months, it had been scrutinizing the activities of its suppliers to verify their compliance with standards set by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO). The RSPO, which also includes Sinar Mas, is a self-regulating body aimed at preventing illegal forest clearance. Environmental groups have criticized it as toothless and an obstacle to independent scrutiny. ...