IOI Loders Croklaan has partnered with Kerry Group to boost the productivity of small-scale palm oil farmers in Sabah, Malaysia.
The three-year ‘small growers support programme’ aims to back the inclusion of smallholders into IOI’s supply chain and help them implement sustainable agricultural practices.
Malaysian social enterprise Wild Asia will be the implementation partner for the initiative, which will be managed by both Kerry Group and IOI Loders Croklaan.
IOI Loders Croklaan sustainability director Ben Vreeburg said: “We have a few potential participating non-RSPO certified mills in the Telupid, Beluran and Kinabatangan landscape (Sabah) with approximately 5,000 smallholders and small growers. We start with one mill – Fortuna – and will increase the number throughout the duration of the programme.
“Smallholders will see a decrease in FFB (fresh fruit bunch) production costs in the first year and a gradual increase in FFB yield in the second year. Through this programme, millers are ensured of a steady supply and better control of FFB and a higher extraction rate.”
The scheme is also designed to help Kerry work more collaboratively with its suppliers.
Kerry Group responsible sourcing manager Maarten Butselaar said: “As a buyer of palm oil we have limited interaction with mills or palm growers, so we rely on our supply partners to help meet our sourcing commitments.
“This partnership gives us a more direct influence on practices at mill and farm level in the project area. Alongside our broader requirements on palm oil, the programme aims to deliver a positive impact for communities and workers within our supply chain.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2019