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Unilever dumps supplier following Greenpeace report

Article taken from Sustainable Sourcing. To view article, click here

Unilever has dumped one of its palm oil suppliers following the publication of a Greenpeace report that cast doubt on the ethical record of Indonesian company PT Smart.

The news, which follows a troubled year for the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil, of which Unilever is a member, was described as "unnerving" by the pressure group, which also called on Nestle and Procter & Gamble to take positive action against irresponsible suppliers.

For its part Unilever said that the allegations outlined in the report were "far too serious" for it to ignore.

Despite Unilever's swift response, Greenpeace claimed that the RSPO was still doing little to tackle the threat of deforestation and other associated threats related to palm oil production.

"The aim of the group is to create clear standards for producing sustainable palm oil but at present these standards are far too weak to ensure that forests and peatlands are not destroyed to meet growing demand for palm oil," a statement read.

The RSPO attracted widespread criticism back in November 2009 when it opted not to include greenhouse gas emissions standards as part of its criteria for 'sustainable' palm oil.

Kenneth Richter, a biofuels campaigner for Friends of the Earth, said that the decision proved that palm oil was not a sustainable biofuel option.

"Palm oil producers have themselves answered the question of whether palm oil can be a sustainable biofuel - with a resounding no," said Richter.

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