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Question for Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

UIN 196874, tabled on 28 November 2018

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department has taken to ensure that products containing palm oil that are sold in the UK use sustainably-produced palm oil.

Answered on

4 December 2018

The Government has set out its ambition in the 25 Year Environment Plan to support and protect the world’s forests, supporting sustainable agriculture and supporting zero-deforestation supply chains including for palm oil.

Through the Amsterdam Declarations and the Tropical Forest Alliance 2020 we are working with business and other governments to strengthen governance, promote market-based solutions and put in place incentives, policies and actions that support sustainable production of palm oil alongside forest protection.

In 2012, Defra published the UK Statement on the Sustainable Production of Palm Oil which was signed by trade associations, NGOs and Government, and aimed to achieve 100% sourcing of credibly certified sustainable palm oil. The latest report from the UK Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil indicates that based on their revised baseline data and methodology, the UK achieved 75% certified sustainable palm oil in 2017. The Roundtable has agreed to report annually on progress, and work with other signatories to the Amsterdam Declaration on increasing the uptake of sustainable palm oil. We recognise that more remains to be done and will continue to explore opportunities to improve the sustainability of palm oil production.