Wilmar’s Refineries and Brands Lag in Implementation of ESG Policies
Wilmar International is a high-profile ESG policy leader, and dominates the palm oil supply chain with a nearly 30% share. Wilmar sources only 7% certified sustainable palm oil for its refineries, and is also lagging sustainable sourcing for its own consumer/FMCG brands. Concerns about ESG violations and investor ratings have hampered Wilmar, also due to lack of transparency, the EU proposals on deforestation and supply chain due diligence will hurt Wilmar's investors and banks. This report evaluates financers’ risks and engagement opportunities related to Wilmar.
Foundational Research for Fair Value Chains and Food Systems
To support the strategy development of Oxfam Novib’s Fair Food Value Chains & Food Systems team, Profundo conducted foundational research to consolidate trends in international trade in agricultural commodities from selected countries to the Netherlands, identify opportunities for food systems transformation, and to map potential alliances across civil society to advocate for fair and just food value chains. The foundational research consists of four key pillars (market research, regulation and policy mapping, alternative food systems typology, and allies mapping), resulting in a set of recommendations to leverage opportunities for Oxfam Novib’s future campaigns on food systems transformation and fair food value chains.
In April 2022, the government of Indonesia introduced a new regulation to ban the export of palm oil, to stabilize the availability of cooking oil within Indonesia. With palm oil Indonesia’s most widely used cooking oil, the regulation raised concern over shortages of palm oil in shops and markets. Furthermore alleged corruption and the demand in the biodiesel sector has led to a cooking oil crisis in Indonesia.
Labour rights observatory - Latin American cane sugar sector
This report has been commissioned by CNV Internationaal to launch the first annual report of the Labour Rights Observatory for the Latin American cane sugar sector. It presents the results of an online survey with 840 workers from Bolivia, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Guatemala, that aimed to capture the labour situation in the sector, from the workers’ perspective. The results show a significant difference in perspectives between direct workers and outsourced or subcontracted workers. For example, outsourced workers receive lower wages and perceive to have worse working conditions. Moreover, the data suggest low participation of women in the sector and fewer job guarantees for women.
Chickens and pigs in Germany are fed with soy that is sourced in part from fields where the Amazon rainforest used to stand. Supermarket chains have pledged for years to remove this soy from their supply chains, but little has changed.
The Netherlands is the biggest importer of Soy in the EU, 60% of Dutch soy imports are from Brazil, part of it is distributed across the EU. This study also shows that more than 85% is used as animal feed. The report commissioned by Greenpeace gives an overview of data on soy shipments to the Netherlands, destinations of Dutch soy imports from Brazil, estimated land use and the potential deforestation linked to the soy production.
The fourth supermarkets scorecard has launched, which investigates the leading supermarkets’ sustainability policies and practices on human rights in their supply chains, transparency, and accountability. Profundo was responsible for the coordination between the participating countries (NL, UK and Germany) and for quality control of all scores for content, quality and consistency. In addition, we also provided all the documentation behind the research and provided an extensive analysis that was used for the campaign materials.
The social impact of financial institutions' investments in Asia's agribusinesses
Profundo assessed for Fair Finance Asia (FFA) the policies of 54 Asian financial institutions actively providing credit and underwriting services to agribusinesses. The results show that between January 2016 and December 2020, selected companies received US$22.6 billion in loans and underwriting attributable to their agribusiness activities from financial institutions active worldwide. The largest creditors are from Japan, Singapore and Malaysia. Moreover, the report highlights the weak enforcement or overall lack of policies on gender equality, human rights, labor rights, and transparency and accountability.
This research provides the underlying data to better understand the soy flows on the EU27+UK market, including data on soy production and trade worldwide, as well as detailed data on soy use in the consumption of animal products in 2020.
This report analyses how Dutch policies on foreign affairs, trade development, and other economic topics are promoting or hampering the advent and adoption of agroecology, agro-biodiversity and agroecological approaches and practices. More specifically, how public resources (both ODA as well as non-ODA, including through vehicles like Public Private Partnerships and blended finance constructions) are allocated to support agricultural development projects, and what share of, to what extent, and how, that funding is supportive of transformational agroecological approaches and practices.
African Oil Palm Expansion Slows, Reputation Risks Remain for FMCGs
African oil palm expansion is not working as planned. Only five international companies dominate industrial oil palm production in Africa. Some of which have been linked to social and environmental impacts, violating their buyers’ NDPE commitments. Therefore, investors may see risk in African palm oil caused by stranded land and reputation risk.
Financing of supermarkets and foodservice companies
This research analysed the financing of supermarkets and foodservice companies Gategroup, Toridoll, Ahold Delhaize, Makro, A&W, Cencosud, Groupe Casino and Walmart, which are all sourcing from meat suppliers with poor animal welfare practices.
After the victory in the Climate Case against Shell, Friends of the Earth Netherlands wants the other major polluters to take action now. On January 13, FoE Netherlands delivered an urgent letter to 29 major polluters, asking them to come up with their own climate plan before April 15.
Profundo helped Milieudefensie to select the largest Dutch climate polluters on the basis of various criteria. These include foreign multinationals with large global GHG emissions, which have located their holding company in the Netherlands for fiscal reasons.