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Small scale palm oil producers and supply chains left out from existing certification schemes. [ID781]

Feintrenie L., Gazull L., Laumain M., Farago-Szekeres T., Robiglio V., Lesage C., Michel I., Durand C., Pasquis R.. 2019. Bern : Global Land Programme, 1 p.. Open Science Meeting of the Global Land Programme OSM2019. 4, 2019-04-21/2019-04-24, Bern (Suisse).

Agricultural history explains most of current palm oil production models (organization of actors including oil palm growers and supply chains). An indigenous non-timber forest product in Central Africa which plant was domesticated and integrated into family farming, later joined by colonial industrial plantations. An imported cash crop in Southeast Asia, dominated by industrial producers while smallholders have still to learn artisanal milling to get their autonomy from industrial mills. Also an imported cash crop in Latin America, but whose production models evolved in the confrontation with social agrarian reforms, ending with original 'social models'. These production models have a great diversity of social, economic and environmental impacts. Taking into consideration national specificities (social organization, market, public policies, and environment) and local knowledge regarding palm oil, can we draw lessons learnt from one place to improve palm oil local and global benefits in another? Industrial models are targeted to promote sustainable and zero-deforestation in the palm oil sector, because industries are generally considered as the main culprits of deforestation and land grabbing resulting from oil palm plantations expansion in Southeast Asia. However the expansion patterns in the original producing countries of Africa or in Latin America might prove different. Hence, are certification schemes efficient to shape sustainable oil palm landscapes? In an attempt to answer these questions, we built on pantropical expertise in palm oil producing countries (Indonesia, Central African countries, Colombia) with strong field experience, on literature review and on recent field work in Mexico and Peru, to argue on the inadequacy of certification schemes to reach non-industrial palm oil production models. Furthermore, we highlight some social and economic risks reinforced by this strategy, such as exclusion of smallholders from supply chains, or the development of informal supply chains not regulated regarding working conditions and environment impacts.

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