Smallholder development as the best route for palm oil in Africa?

Published 21 Dec 2016

The role of smallholders featured heavily in last month’s Guardian expert panel discussion on oil palm development in Africa. Abraham Baffoe, Africa Regional Director for SHARP partner Proforest, was on the panel, which was supported by the Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil. Amongst the panel members and the audience, who were invited to contribute questions, there was a strong interest in ensuring local communities and smallholders benefit from the industry. And many agreed with Abraham’s concluding statement that the preferable form of palm oil development for Africa would be through smallholder production.

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SHARP event at RSPO RT in Bangkok

Published 19 Dec 2016

At the recent RSPO RT 14 SHARP Partners Olam, Sime Darby and Proforest co-hosted a side event to present and publicise SHARP tools, and discuss the business case for their use in Palm Oil smallholder engagement. The SHARP Secretariat presented the RSS framework and field guides. Field experience from Honduras and plans for scale up in Indonesia were discussed by SHARP Regional Focal Points SNV and Proforest. The event was well attended, with representatives from several major palm oil production and trading companies and end users who contributed questions and comments from the floor.

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Independent smallholders - Costs and benefits of RSPO certification

Published 02 Aug 2016

A recent study by the SEnSOR Programme quantifies costs and benefits and potential impact on livelihoods of RSPO certification for independent smallholders. It shows they need support from third parties in order to meet RSPO requirements, which is costly. The report synthesises available evidence of monetary costs and benefits of RSPO certification for independent smallholders, by reviewing available literature and using secondary data from a PhD-study and NGOs. The findings give insights on the initial investments needed to certify smallholders, as well as the recurring costs and benefits and the potential impact of RSPO certification on smallholders’ livelihoods (read the short report-summary).

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WWF Cameroon and RSS

Published 22 Jun 2016

WWF Cameroon and its local partner Environmental Governance Institute (EGI) is looking into RSS as a tool for their work on sustainable smallholder palm oil production. Using models such as the RSS framework, the aim is to create win-win partnerships between smallholders and agroindustry and to facilitate the restructuring of palm oil smallholder farmers into cooperatives. WWF and EGI is organising a series of workshops that will cover cooperative governance focusing on leadership, conflict management, benefit sharing and business development.

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RSS to identify issues in smallholder rubber production

Published 16 Jun 2016

As previously reported SHARP’s Regional Focal Point SNV has been working on a model for improving smallholder management of natural rubber production. They have now introduced the RSS framework to add value to this programme.

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