GGC, GIZ, local stakeholders signed MoU to support sustainable palm oil production and procurement in Thailand

Story and Photos: Apiradee Treerutkuarkul, Agriculture and Food Cluster

Krabi, Thailand – Global Green Chemicals Public Company Limited (GGC) together with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, palm oil mill partners and smallholder farmers in the southern region recently signed a Memorandum of Understand as a joint partnership aimed at promoting and improving livelihoods among smallholder farmers by implementing Thailand Palm Smallholder Academy (TOPSA), for connecting farmers’ networks with palm oil mills and enhancing their capacities for the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certification by 2024.

GGC and GIZ, through the Sustainable and Climate – friendly Palm Oil Production and Procurement in Thailand (SCPOPP) helps promote and enhance the capacity of oil palm smallholders in implementing the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) standard for sustainability in sustainable palm oil production in Thailand.

Piroj Samutthananont, Managing Director, Global Green Chemicals Public Company Limited (GGC)

Piroj Samutthananont, GGC Managing Director, said “GGC, plays a leading role in pioneering the environment-friendly chemical and oleochemical industry in Thailand. Apart from providing opportunities for agricultural sector, we also aim to create economic sustainability throughout the value chain. Our company is committed to supporting Thailand’s sustainable palm oil production, gaining international recognition. This is accordingly to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and GGC’s sustainability performance in economic, social, and environmental dimensions.

GGC and GIZ also share the same goal in enhancing Thailand’s sustainable palm oil production and procurement throughout the supply chain. The MoU signed today represents a joint partnership between GGC, GIZ, seven palm oil mill operators and more than 1,000 oil palm smallholders throughout the project’s pilot four provinces of Krabi, Trang, Chumphon and Phang Nga, to drive forward the sustainable, environment-friendly production of palm and palm oil throughout the supply chain and support for smallholder farmers to access the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), regarded as one of the internationally accepted standards, by 2024.”

Dr. Kanokwan Saswattecha, Project Manager of Sustainable and Climate – friendly Palm Oil Production and Procurement in Thailand (SCPOPP)

Dr Kanokwan Saswattecha, Project Manager of Sustainable and Climate – friendly Palm Oil Production and Procurement in Thailand (SCPOPP), said “The challenge of Thailand’s palm oil industry is not deforestation, but limited capacities and ability of farmers to access international standards. Majority oil palm smallholder farmers still lack awareness and opportunities to access knowledge and resources essential for upscaling domestic oil palm production to meet international standard. GIZ has been working with the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives to run the SCPOPP project since 2018 by introducing the Thailand Oil Palm Smallholder Academy (TOPSA) and developing “i-Palm” application. These tools and resources are essential for enhancing their oil palm production capacities and competitiveness in the global market in the long run.

Over 200 TOSPA-trained agricultural extension officials, smallholder farmers and representatives from palm oil mills participated in the TOPSA training have managed to pass on knowledge on sustainable oil palm and palm oil production to more than 3,400 palm oil farmers in the four pilot provinces. Of the total, up to 400 smallholders are certified as sustainable oil palm producers following the RSPO standard and successfully establish the connection in the global markets, leading to an improvement of their local livelihoods and the sustainable palm oil production in Thailand. Evidently, cooperation from all players in the supply chain can increase the potential of our oil palm smallholder farmers.”

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