Latest news and events
Read our blog for recent news and events on transparency and sustainability for global commodity production.
Chris Eves | 09/11/2017 | London, UK
ZSL has today announced the expansion of its pioneering sustainable commodities monitoring platform to cover the timber, pulp and paper industry, following the success of encouraging greater transparency in the palm oil sector.
Chris Eves | 04/10/2017 | Vancouver, Canada
Taking place once every three years, this year the 8th Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) General Assembly 2017 will take place in Vancouver, Canada, from 8-13 October.
Clara Melot | 03/10/2017 | Berlin, Germany
The Principles for Responsible Investment annual conference, PRI in Person is a unique opportunity to share knowledge on the integration of ESG factors into investment decisions.
Chris Eves | 22/09/2017 | Freiberg, Germany
As Forestry Officer for the Zoological Society of London I attended the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO) 125th Anniversary Congress, from 18-22 September in Freiberg, Germany.
Izabela Delabre | 19/09/2017 | London, UK
A recent study commissioned by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) Biodiversity and High Conservation Value (HCV) Working Group investigated the challenges to effective HCV management and monitoring in oil palm plantations.
Izabela Delabre | 13/09/2017 | London, UK
Palm Lines, a new report by WWF-India, highlights the key role that India can play in driving improved sustainability practices in the sector, including through the use of SPOTT for supplier screening.
Moritz Koenig | 18/07/2017 | London, UK
The Zoological Society of London (ZSL) recently published a blog post on the CFA Institute’s Asia-Pacific Research Exchange (ARX), highlighting for the first time the discrepancies between companies’ commitments and their implementation…
Joyce Lam | 29/06/2017 | London, UK
As another hazy dry season looks set to loom across Southeast Asia, the latest SPOTT assessments find palm oil producers and traders varying in their commitments to combating fires and ensuring sustainability…
Chris Eves | 27/06/2017 | London, UK
ZSL’s SPOTT is expanding to assess the transparency of major forest product producers operating in priority tropical areas, scoring companies on their commitments to environmental, social and governance (ESG) best practice…
Alexis Hatto | 14/06/2017 | London, UK
ZSL runs conservation programmes in over 50 countries, including Indonesia, where we work to protect the Sumatran tiger through actions such as anti-poaching programmes, and engagement with local communities and industry…
Izabela Delabre | 13/06/2017 | London, UK
As ZSL’s palm oil technical advisor, I attended this year’s Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) European Roundtable in London, on 12-13 June 2017, to take part in a panel discussion on innovation and partnerships…
Clara Melot | 01/06/2017 | London, UK
Prompted by a growing number of reports stressing the negative impacts of palm oil production, financial experts first called upon ZSL back in 2013, given our collaborative conservation work with the industry…
Hidden Land, Hidden Risks
The Zoological Society of London (ZSL) has produced a new analysis on the land holdings disclosed by 50 of the world’s largest palm oil producers and traders assessed on SPOTT.
This SPOTT report – Hidden Land, Hidden Risks? The need for improved corporate reporting of land holdings associated with palm oil production – shows that companies are failing to publicly disclose figures on their total landbank and details of the different areas under their management, potentially masking environmental and social risks, such as deforestation.
Companies should provide regular, consistent reports with relevant dates, following clear definitions for the different types of land under their management. The Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) and other standard-setters should play a role in developing definitions and ensure high quality reporting of quantitative and spatial data.
ZSL urges shareholders and other stakeholders to drive transparency by requiring their investees and clients to coherently disclose information relating to their land holdings. These actions can support more informed decision making for responsible investment and sourcing.
Landbank figures often vary in terms of reliability, and some companies report conflicting data, as evidenced below. ZSL has encouraged greater transparency and accuracy in relation to land holdings data and other reporting, as part of Resolution 6g at the 12th RSPO General Assembly, calling for improvements to the RSPO Annual Communications of Progress (ACOP) reporting process.
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SPOTT annual reports
ZSL has published two SPOTT annual reports since launching the former Sustainable Palm Oil Transparency Toolkit in November 2014. These reports demonstrate the impacts of SPOTT on the palm oil industry, tracking notable increases in corporate transparency scores.