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Nov 19, 2009

FoEI submit grievance against roundtable on sustainable palm oil

by PhilLee — last modified Nov 19, 2009 12:48 PM

Friends of the Earth International have submitted a grievance against members of the roundtable on sustainable palm oil (RSPO) who sit on the board of the Malaysian Palm Oil Council and have repeatedly broken RSPO's code of conduct.

The grievance has been made against the Malaysian Palm Oil Association (MPOA), who are a co-founder and member of RSPO as well as an institutional representative in the Board of Trustees of the Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC). The grievance furthermore extends to RSPO members whose CEOs or Board Members are also represented in the MPOC Board of Trustees.


RSPO members have committed themselves to be bound by a Code of Conduct which states:

"Members will not make any misleading or unsubstantiated claims about the production, procurement or use of sustainable palm oil."

MPOC is not a member of RSPO but key RSPO members have been and continue to be heavily represented in the MPOC Board of Trustees.


MPOC has never publicised information about the mandates of its Board of Trustee members. In view of the generally accepted roles and responsibilities of such Board of Trustee members it is fair to assume that such directors are responsible to help shape the organisation’s policies, carry responsibility for its practices at large and help implement the organisation’s policies.

Furthermore, the 2007 MPOC Annual Report highlights how MPOC’s Board of Trustee members have contributed to MPOC’s marketing efforts world-wide.

The members of the Board of Trustees are therefore assumed to be responsible for MPOC’s external communications. This is highly relevant, because in the last 2 years, MPOC has twice seen its advertisements banned from British media for breaches of the Advertising Standards Authority.


We will report back on the outcome


further reading

Read the grievance here