Ferrero & Nestle both get green ticks of approval from Greenpeace

Chocolate-maker Ferrero and food company Nestle have topped the global ranking for being tree—friendly with their commitment to stop using non-plantation palm oil in their products.

In its latest report, Greenpeace commended Ferrero, the Italian manufacturer of Ferrero Rocher and Nutella, as well as multinational food company Nestle on their track records to cut deforestation and completely remove non-plantation grown palm oil from their supply chains.

Out of the 14 global companies that were evaluated by Greenpeace, Ferrero for example was found to be able to trace almost 100 per cent of its palm oil to the actual planation where it was grown.

Nestle for its part was praised for its substantial traceability of its raw materials back to the plantation, which in itself is quite significant considering the amount of raw materials that Nestle uses year on year.

“Palm oil is found in so many products, which is why brands have a responsibility to their customers to act,” said Annisa Rahmawati of Greenpeace Indonesia – an area where deforestation for palm oil plantations poses a ‘major threat to endangered animals'. 

“Palm oil can be grown responsibly without destroying forests, harming local communities or threatening orangutans. But our survey shows that brands are not doing enough to stop the palm oil industry ransacking Indonesia's rainforests.”

On the other end of the green scale, Pepsi was given a failed ratings with its palm oil progress. According to Greenpeace, this was due to its slow progress on tracing palm oil and reducing exposure to deforestation.

PepsiCo, as well as food companies like Unilever were also criticised by Greenpeace for using the GreenPalm scheme, whereby companies buy certificates from a palm oil grower certified by the Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil to offset each tonne of the ingredient they use. 

While there is no guarantee the palm oil is actaully certified sustainable by using the GreenPalm scheme, Greenpeace went further to label the program a "false solution" and said companies should phase out their use of the certificates.

According to edie.net, the 14 companies reviewed by Greenpeace in this report are: Colgate-Palmolive, Danone, Ferrero, General Mills, Ikea, Johnson & Johnson, Kellogg, Mars, Mondelez, Nestle, Orkla, PepsiCo, P&G and Unilever.

The world goes nuts for Aussie almonds

According to the Almond Board of Australia, almonds have become our most valuable horticultural export, with annual export sales surpassing $AUD422 million last year, which is an increase of 14 per cent on the previous year.

This is on top of massive growth over the past five years, where export sales increased almost 250 per cent.

Future predictions note that in 2015-16, export sales will reach $AUD600 million.

In fact, the almond industry is set to become Australia’s most valuable single commodity horticultural industry, generating around 10 per cent of Australian horticulture’s gross value.

India is Australia’s largest overseas market for almonds, followed by
Spain, the United States and the United Arab Emirates.

According to Ross Skinner, CEO of the Almond Board of Australia, “The recent Free Trade Agreements with Japan and Korea combined with the industry’s focus on promoting the Australian almond brand in these countries has resulted in promising gains of 295% and 145%, albeit off a low base.”

“The China and India FTA’s will be very advantageous to the Australian industry as these are two of the largest almond markets in the world and the removal of tariffs will make a significant impact on returns from these markets,” Mr. Skinner stated.