Mars claims palm oil is ‘deforestation-free’ after ditching hundreds of suppliers

October 7, 2020 by  
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Mars claims palm oil is ‘deforestation-free’ after ditching hundreds of suppliers Cecilia Keating Wed, 10/07/2020 – 00:15 U.S. confectionary, food and pet care giant Mars claims to have eliminated deforestation from its palm oil supply chain after shrinking the number of mills it works with from 1,500 to a few hundred, it announced this week. The adoption of shorter, more transparent palm oil supply chains and working exclusively with suppliers that meet specific environmental, social and ethical standards has made it easier for the company to keep track of its palm oil supply chain, which the company said is no longer contributing to the destruction of tropical forests as a result. Mars said it had reached its goal after a concerted effort to trim the number of mills it works with from 1,500 last year, and it expects to be working with less than 100 in 2021 and under 50 in 2022. The destruction of rainforests to make way for palm oil plantations is a major contributor to climate change and nature loss, due to the crucial role of richly biodiverse tropical forests in sequestering carbon dioxide, absorbing rainfall and releasing water into rivers. But while many food companies, including Mars, have pledged to reduce deforestation through their supply chain to net-zero by the end of this year through a 2010 commitment to the Consumer Goods Forum, environmental groups have warned the progress remains slow and the large majority of companies are on track to miss their target. Business can — and must — be powerful change agents for social and environmental change in order to have resilient, reliable supply chains and a more equitable and sustainable world. Mars chief executive officer Grant Reid said the pandemic had underscored how global supply chains were “broken” and stressed that there was an “urgent need for business to transform buying and supply strategies and practices” if the world was to address environmental and social challenges.  “Business as usual will not drive the transformational change that’s needed,” Reid said. “Business can — and must — be powerful change agents for social and environmental change in order to have resilient, reliable supply chains and a more equitable and sustainable world.” Mars said it had achieved the milestone using satellite mapping to monitor land use with third-party validation from sustainable production consultancy Aidenvironment and its Indonesian spinoff Earth Equalizer. Barry Parkin, chief procurement and sustainability officer at Mars, said that the firm was hoping that its achievement would have a ripple effect across the palm industry. “We at Mars have reached a significant milestone — but in order to extend this impact beyond our own supply, we are asking our suppliers that they apply these principles to all the palm oil that they source not just the material they supply to us,” he said. “Through this action, and if adopted by others, we can reach a tipping point to drive systemic change across the entire palm industry.” Mars’ efforts to simplify its supply chain builds on the company’s ongoing effort to eliminate deforestation and degradation from the beef, cocoa, palm oil, soy and pulp and paper supply chains through its work with the Consumer Goods Forum. Tropical Forest Alliance executive director Justin Adams commended the multinational for achieving net-zero deforestation in its palm supply chain, but warned that collective action would be needed to takle problems across the global sector. “It is a testament to the hard work and dedication of the company over the last 10 years, and we need to see more companies embrace the logic of the three-M model — map, manage, monitor — that they have laid out,” he said. “But Mars’ success today also highlights the limits of individual leadership. We can only stop deforestation by working collectively in key production landscapes and across the entire sector.” Pull Quote Business can — and must — be powerful change agents for social and environmental change in order to have resilient, reliable supply chains and a more equitable and sustainable world. Topics Forestry Food & Agriculture Deforestation BusinessGreen Featured in featured block (1 article with image touted on the front page or elsewhere) Off Duration 0 Sponsored Article Off Palm fruits by tristan tan via Shutterstock

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Mars claims palm oil is ‘deforestation-free’ after ditching hundreds of suppliers

IPCC landmark report warns about the state of the oceans, polar ice content and the climate crisis

September 26, 2019 by  
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The United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) — which is, in fact, the UN body responsible for communicating on the deteriorating climate — has officially recognized the oceans as a critical component in the climate change crisis. Warming ocean temperatures are becoming commonplace and are melting ice sheets and glaciers and contributing to rising sea levels. Additionally, the warm waters affect the ocean’s oxygen levels. As these phenomena accelerate toward a tipping point, nature’s ecosystems will be disrupted, and human society will be adversely affected. The IPCC’s announcement of its Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate — which is based on almost 7,000 peer-reviewed research articles — signals a crucial milestone. If things remain as the status quo, then ecological upheaval is imminent. Related: Even scientists are shocked by the latest UN report on climate change Our oceans comprise an important habitat that many living things, including humans, rely on for food and sustenance. Oceans also collectively absorb more than a quarter of the human-made carbon dioxide being produced, while simultaneously providing half of the oxygen created on our planet. Similarly, more than 90 percent of the heat generated via greenhouse gas emissions is likewise absorbed by our oceans. In this way, the oceans play a significant role in global climate regulation. But our climate is in dire crisis. Rising global temperatures are making oceans warmer through marine heatwaves. Warm ocean water is less likely to hold oxygen, leading to subsequent ocean acidification. Plus, warmer waters bleach coral reefs and also increase the likelihood of water chemistry disruptions, so that both bacterial and algal blooms become more common, as do red tides. Marine biodiversity is thrown off-kilter, leaving certain ocean regions devoid of life. Mass endangerment and extinctions of particular marine species becomes inevitable, and fishing yields dwindle considerably. Hence, for the 70-member coalition known as the Ocean and Climate Platform, the ocean’s sustainability comes into question. To stem the tide of climate catastrophe, the authors of the report are warning humanity and calling for policy change. If human-induced warming continues, there will come a time when the damage can no longer be healed. Immediate collaborative action is required, before it is too late, to reverse and remedy the climate crisis. + IPCC Image via Oregon State University

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IPCC landmark report warns about the state of the oceans, polar ice content and the climate crisis

Electric buses and trucks charge ahead

March 25, 2019 by  
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China is ahead with electrification, but the year ahead could be a tipping point elsewhere.

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Electric buses and trucks charge ahead

Electric buses and trucks charge ahead

March 25, 2019 by  
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China is ahead with electrification, but the year ahead could be a tipping point elsewhere.

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Electric buses and trucks charge ahead

Stopping the flood of marine debris

March 25, 2019 by  
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The best of live interviews from GreenBiz events. This episode: Execs from impact investing, corporates and NGOs talk ending ocean plastic pollution.

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Stopping the flood of marine debris

Stopping the flood of marine debris

March 25, 2019 by  
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The best of live interviews from GreenBiz events. This episode: Execs from impact investing, corporates and NGOs talk ending ocean plastic pollution.

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Stopping the flood of marine debris

Mastering the long haul of sustainability

March 25, 2019 by  
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Self-management, perseverance and adaptability all matter.

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Mastering the long haul of sustainability

Mastering the long haul of sustainability

March 25, 2019 by  
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Self-management, perseverance and adaptability all matter.

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Mastering the long haul of sustainability

How can business help people to take action on climate change?

March 18, 2019 by  
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As we are approaching a tipping point for the climate in the very near future, there needs to be a massive global mobilization to take action and reduce human impact on the climate.

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How can business help people to take action on climate change?

Are product sustainability programs at a tipping point?

August 22, 2012 by  
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Why product sustainability is now a strategic imperative to sustainability execs and their companies.

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Are product sustainability programs at a tipping point?

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