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Palm oil assessments

US based producer and trader Cargill provides food, agriculture, financial and industrial products and services.

  • Landbank (oil palm):
    165,364 hectares
  • Thomson Reuters ticker:
    Private company
  • Bloomberg ticker:
    Private company
  • RSPO member?
    Yes
  • Website:

Company assessment: Cargill Inc – November 2018

SPOTT assesses companies against over 100 indicators across ten categories. Click on the icons or bars below to expand each category for further details, scoring and links to reports and sources.

Assessment date:

Total: 68.2% 83.5 / 122.5
  • Sustainability policy and leadership Sustainability policy and leadership 6 / 6 100%
    • Companies should publish sustainability policies or similar covering their entire supply chain — including third party suppliers — implemented and enforced through high-level leadership that engages with wider industry schemes.

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      1. Sustainable palm oil policy or commitment for all its operations?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      2. Policy or commitment applies to direct and third-party suppliers?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      3. High-level position of responsibility for sustainability?

      Sustainability Director, Cargill Agricultural Supply Chain

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      4. Sustainability report published within last two years?

      The company publishes regular sustainability updates

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      5. Member of multiple industry schemes or other external initiatives to improve sustainability in relation to palm oil?

      TFA 2020, TFT, WBCSD and UNGC

    • n/a
      -
      No source

      6. Verification report on compliance with POIG Charter, if a POIG member?

      This indicator is disabled as it is not applicable to this company.

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      7. Activities with government, NGOs or academic institutions to improve palm oil sustainability?

      The company is a founding member of the Palm Oil Traceability Working Group (TWG), convened by IDH Sustainable Trade Initiative; partnered with WRI's GFW to develop global baseline for tree cover loss; participated in the HCS Convergence Working Group

  • Landbank, maps and traceability Landbank, maps and traceability 16 / 19 84.2%
    • Companies should publicly report figures on their total landbank and details of different areas under their management. They should also disclose maps of their management areas and provide details on traceability of their products, both to mill and plantation level.

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      8. Total land area managed/controlled for oil palm (ha)?

      165,364 - Figure includes Alpha Capital Limited (Poliplant group) which was acquired by the company in Dec 2015

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      9. Total oil palm planted area (ha)?

      104,466 - Figure includes Alpha Capital Limited (Poliplant group) which was acquired by the company in Dec 2015

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      10. Plasma/scheme smallholders planted area (ha)?

      43,220 - Figure includes Alpha Capital Limited (Poliplant group) which was acquired by the company in Dec 2015

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      11. Unplanted (areas designated for future planting) (ha)?

      5,000 - Figure includes Alpha Capital Limited (Poliplant group) which was acquired by the company in Dec 2015

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      12. Conservation set-aside area, including HCV area (ha)?

      12,678 - Figure includes Alpha Capital Limited (Poliplant group) which was acquired by the company in Dec 2015. This figure has decreased from 17,558 reported in the company's 2016 ACOPs

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      13. Area for infrastructure (ha)?

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      14. Number and names of company owned mills?

      The company's ACOP states it has 9 palm oil mills. The company's Global Mill List gives the names of 10 company owned mills, and its 2017 progress update states it has 11 mills

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      15. Maps or coordinates of company owned mills?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      16. Number and names of supplier mills?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      17. Maps of estates/management units?

      The company states that is has submitted concession boundaries to the RSPO and the company declares these represent 100% of its concession sites, but they may not all be available due to ongoing legal issues. Maps will become available on GeoRSPO

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      18. Maps of scheme/plasma smallholders?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      19. Time-bound commitment to achieve 100% traceability to mill level?

      2,020

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      20. Time-bound commitment to achieve 100% traceability to plantation level?

      2,020

    • Yes
      2 / 2
      Source

      21. Percentage of supply traceable to mill level (above 80%)?

      96% - The company states "At the end of 2017, 96 percent of the palm we sourced (99 percent of the kernel and 96 percent of the palm was traceable to the mill"

    • Yes
      2 / 2
      Source

      22. Percentage of fresh fruit bunches (FFB) from own mills traceable to plantation level (above 75%)?

      100% - The company states "Our own plantations and mills in Indonesia are fully traceable"

    • Partial
      1.5 / 2
      Source

      23. Percentage of fresh fruit bunches (FFB) from supplier mills traceable to plantation level (above 75%)?

      55% - The company states it achieved 55 percent traceability to plantation (32 percent of kernel and 59 percent of palm) at the end of 2017

  • Deforestation and biodiversity Deforestation and biodiversity 7 / 10 70%
    • Companies should commit to address deforestation and to set aside areas for conservation. They should report on any activities to manage or restore habitat in their conservation areas, or monitor deforestation in their supply chains. They should also provide evidence of species conservation and biodiversity protection.

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      24. Commitment to zero deforestation?

      The company commits to no deforestation within its palm oil operations, and has a goal to eliminate deforestation across its entire agricultural supply chain, halving it by 2020 and ending it completely by 2030

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      25. Deforestation commitment applies to scheme smallholders and independent suppliers?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      26. Criteria for defining deforestation?

      Old growth forest, primary forests, HCV, HCS, peat

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      27. Evidence of monitoring deforestation?

      The company partnered with World Resources Institute's Global Forest Watch to build a decision-support system and spatial monitoring platform to help track progress and real-time challenges associated with deforestation commitments

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      28. Examples of habitat management and/or habitat restoration?

      The company undertook mangrove planting in Jakarta Bay

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      29. Implementing a landscape-level approach to biodiversity conservation?

      The company states "Cargill is actively engaged with IDH-The Sustainable Trade Initiative as a member of the Sustainable Landscapes Working Group (formerly the Traceability Working Group)" and is working with Proforest to identify priority landscapes for 2018

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      30. Commitment to biodiversity conservation?

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      31. Commitment to not endanger species of conservation concern, referencing international or national system of species classification?

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      32. Commitment to no hunting or only sustainable hunting of species?

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      33. Examples of species conservation activities?

      The company only has one example of species conservation, through the launch of a human-wildlife contact program

  • HCV, HCS and impact assessments HCV, HCS and impact assessments 9.5 / 11 86.4%
    • Companies should commit to the High Conservation Value (HCV) and High Carbon Stock (HCS) approaches, and to conduct social and environmental impact assessments (SEIA). They should develop and publish monitoring and management plans, and provide evidence through SEIA, HCV and HCS assessments, typically published in summary form due to the sensitive nature of certain sites.

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      34. Commitment to conduct High Conservation Value (HCV) assessments?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      35. HCV commitment applies to scheme smallholders and independent suppliers?

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      36. Commitment to only use licensed High Conservation Value (HCV) assessors accredited by the HCV Resource Network's Assessor Licensing Scheme (ALS)?

      This company does not have an explicit commitment itself, but commits under the RSPO New Planting Procedures (NPP) as an RSPO member

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      37. High Conservation Value (HCV) assessments for planting undertaken prior to January 2015, and associated management and monitoring plans?

      The following HCV assessments are publicly available:
      West Kalimantan: PT Indo Sawit Kekal
      South Sumatra: PT Hindoli Mukut-Penuguan; PT Sumber Terang Agro Lestari

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      38. High Conservation Value (HCV) assessments for all estates planted since January 2015?

      The following HCV assessments are publicly available:
      Alpha Capital Limited - PT Andes Sawit Mas; PT Andes Agro Investama (AAI) and PT Andes Sawit Lestari (ASL); Cargill Incorporated - PT Harapan Sawit Lestari; PT Andes Sawit Mas; PT Poliplant Sejahtera and PT Maya Agro Investama

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      39. High Conservation Value (HCV) management and monitoring plans for all estates planted since January 2015?

      The following HCV management and monitoring plans are available:
      Alpha Capital Limited - PT Andes Sawit Mas; PT Andes Agro Investama (AAI) and PT Andes Sawit Lestari (ASL); Cargill Incorporated - PT Harapan Sawit Lestari; PT Andes Sawit Mas; PT Poliplant Sejahtera and PT Maya Agro Investama

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      40. Satisfactory review of all High Conservation Value (HCV) assessments undertaken since January 2015 by the HCV ALS Quality Panel?

      Three HCV assessments have been reviewed as satisfactory. The HCV assessment for PT Harapan Sawit Lestari has not been quality reviewed by the HCVRN

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      41. Commitment to the High Carbon Stock (HCS) Approach?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      42. High Carbon Stock (HCS) assessments?

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      43. Commitment to conduct social and environmental impact assessments (SEIAs)?

      This company does not have an explicit commitment itself, but commits under the RSPO New Planting Procedures (NPP) as an RSPO member

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      44. Social and environmental impact assessments (SEIAs) undertaken, and associated management and monitoring plans?

      The following SEIA assessments are publicly available:
      West Kalimantan: PT Indo Sawit Kekal; PT Harapan Sawit Lestari; Alpha Capital Limited - PT Andes Sawit Mas;
      South Sumatra: PT Hindoli Mukut-Penuguan; PT Sumber Terang Agro Lestari

  • Peat, fire and GHG emissions Peat, fire and GHG emissions 9 / 15 60%
    • Companies should commit to protect peatland and undertake best management practices for soils and peat. They should also have policies on zero burning and to reduce their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Companies should report their GHG emissions, as well as any fires that occurred in or around their estates, along with plans for managing and monitoring fires.

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      45. Commitment to no planting on peat of any depth?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      46. Peat commitment applies to scheme smallholders and independent suppliers?

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      47. Commitment to best management practices for soils and peat?

      The company commits to best management practices for existing plantations on peat, but does not have a commitment for soils

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      48. Landbank or planted area on peat?

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      49. Evidence of best management practices for soils and peat?

      The company only states that it sponsored and participated in a workshop on peatland conservation. The workshop was designed to kick off the Smallholder Protocol for Sustainable Management of Peat Areas and Responsible Replanting of Oil Palm

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      50. Commitment to zero burning?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      51. Zero burning commitment applies to scheme smallholders and independent suppliers?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      52. Evidence of management and monitoring fires?

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      53. Details/number of hotspots/fires in company estates?

      The company reported in December 2015 45 fires identified on and around its plantations in Indonesia. The data is more than 2 years old

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      54. Details/number of hotspots/fires within surrounding landscape/smallholders?

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      55. Time-bound commitment to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions intensity?

      2,025 - The company had a previous target to "improve greenhouse gas intensity by 5 percent against a fiscal 2015 baseline" by 2020. Their new target is to reduce absolute greenhouse gas emissions by 10% by 2025, against a 2017 baseline. This updated target is not reported in terms of greenhouse gas intensity

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      56. GHG emissions from land use change?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      57. Methodology used to calculate GHG emissions?

      RSPO PalmGHG Calculator

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      58. Progress towards commitment to reduce GHG emissions intensity?

      The company reported a 3.2% improvement in GHG intensity in its 2017 Annual Report

    • No
      0 / 1
      Source

      59. Percentage of mills with methane capture (100%)?

      The company is currently working on completing methane capture facilities at two of its mills by 2020

  • Water, chemical and pest management Water, chemical and pest management 1 / 12 8.3%
    • Companies should commit to managing water use and water quality, providing evidence through time-bound reduction plans, policies on toxic chemical use and treatment of palm oil mill effluent (POME).

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      60. Time-bound commitment to improve water use per tonne of FFB Processed?

      2,020 (5%) - The company has a target to achieve a 5% improvement in water efficiency against a fiscal 2015 baseline by 2020 but it does not have a commitment for its palm oil operations specifically

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      61. Time-bound commitment to improve water quality (BOD and COD)?

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      62. Progress towards commitment on water use?

      The company reports a 2.9% improvement in freshwater efficiency improvement in its 2017 Annual Report

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      63. Progress towards commitment on water quality (BOD and COD)?

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      64. Protection of natural waterways through buffer zones?

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      65. Evidence of treating palm oil mill effluent (POME)?

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      66. Commitment to minimise the use of chemicals, including pesticides and chemical fertilisers?

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      67. No use of paraquat?

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      68. No use of World Health Organisation (WHO) Class 1A and 1B pesticides?

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      69. No use of chemicals listed under the Stockholm Convention and Rotterdam Convention?

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      70. Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach?

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      71. Chemical usage per ha or list of chemicals used?

  • Community, land and labour rights Community, land and labour rights 11 / 19.5 56.4%
    • Companies should commit to respect human rights, including those of indigenous peoples and local communities, consulted with free, prior and informed consent (FPIC). Companies should respect the rights of workers, report relevant workforce data, and comply with health and safety legislation.

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      72. Commitment to human rights, referencing the UN Declaration of Human Rights or UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      73. Commitment to human rights applies to scheme smallholders and independent suppliers?

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      74. Commitment to respect legal and customary land tenure rights?

      The company only commits to respect land tenure rights in relation to FPIC

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      75. Commitment to respect indigenous and local communities' rights, referencing the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples or ILO 169?

      The company commits to "No exploitation of rights of indigenous peoples and local communities" but does not mention the UNDRIP/ILO

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      76. Commitment to free, prior and informed consent (FPIC)?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      77. FPIC commitment applies to independent suppliers?

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      78. Details of free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) process available?

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      79. Details of process for addressing land conflicts available?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      80. Commitment to mitigate impacts on food security?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      81. Commitment to provide essential community services and facilities?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      82. Commitment to respect all workers' rights?

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      83. Reference to Fundamental ILO Conventions or Free and Fair Labour Principles?

      The company does not refer to the minimum age convention

    • Yes
      0.5 / 0.5
      Source

      84. Total number of employees?

      155,000 - The company reports 155,000 as the total number of employees for all its operations

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      85. Percentage or number of temporary employees?

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      86. Percentage or number of women employees?

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      87. Commitment to pay minimum wage?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      88. Commitment to address occupational health and safety?

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      89. Time lost due to work-based injuries?

      1.34 - The company states a Reportable Injury Frequency Rate (RIFR) of 1.34 in 2016, but it is unclear how this figure relates to its palm oil operations

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      90. Number of fatalities as a result of work-based accidents?

      3 - The company reports 3 work fatalities in its 2018 Annual Report, but it is unclear how this figure relates to its palm oil operations

    • No
      0 / 1
      No source

      91. Provision of personal protective equipment and pesticide training?

  • Certification standards Certification standards 11.5 / 17 67.6%
    • Companies should become members of credible certification standards and report in accordance with all appropriate categories of membership. The Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) requires members registered as growers to submit data relating to certification targets for their estates, scheme smallholders and independent fresh fruit bunch (FFB) suppliers, via an annual communications of progress (ACOP) report.

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      92. Member of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO)?

      2,004

    • Yes
      0.5 / 0.5
      Source

      93. Submitted most recent RSPO Annual Communication of Progress (ACOP)?

    • Yes
      0.5 / 0.5
      Source

      94. Listed all countries and regions in which operates in most recent RSPO Annual Communication of Progress (ACOP)?

      The company states all the countries and regions in which it operates as a palm oil grower: Indonesia (West Kalimantan and South Sumatra)

    • Yes
      0.5 / 0.5
      Source

      95. Time-bound plan for achieving 100% RSPO certification of estates within 5 years or achieved 100% RSPO-certification of estates?

      2,020

    • Yes
      0.5 / 0.5
      Source

      96. Time-bound plan for achieving 100% RSPO certification of scheme/associated smallholders within 5 years or achieved 100% RSPO-certification of scheme/associated smallholders?

      2,020

    • Yes
      0.5 / 0.5
      Source

      97. Year expected to achieve 100% RSPO certification of all palm product processing facilities?

      2,020

    • Yes
      0.5 / 0.5
      Source

      98. RSPO-certified within three years of joining the RSPO or by November 2010, for companies joining prior to finalisation of the RSPO certification systems in November 2007?

      2,009 - The company became a member of the RSPO in 2004 and certified its first estate in 2009. Alpha Capital became a member of the RSPO in 2016 and achieved its first certification in 2016

    • Yes
      2 / 2
      Source

      99. Percentage of mills RSPO-certified (above 75%)?

      7 (78%)

    • Partial
      1 / 2
      Source

      100. Percentage of area (ha) RSPO-certified (above 75%)?

      80,071 (48.4%)

    • Partial
      1.5 / 2
      Source

      101. Percentage of scheme/associated smallholders (ha) RSPO-certified (above 75%)?

      27,097 (62.7%) - Area certified divided by total area under scheme smallholders (hectares)

    • No
      0 / 2
      Source

      102. Percentage of FFB supply (tonnes) from independent FFB suppliers that is RSPO-certified (above 75%)?

      The company does not report having independent suppliers in its ACOP, however it states in its recent progress report that it does source from independent smallholders

    • Partial
      0.5 / 2
      Source

      103. Percentage of all palm oil and oil palm products handled/traded/processed (tonnes) that are RSPO-certified (above 75%)?

      574,939 - The company does not report data on the total volume traded/processed in the year, only the volume RSPO-certified. It reports the percentages of "transformation and certified volumes" of PKO and CPO but it is unclear what this includes and it does not give an overall figure

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      104. Sells or processes/trades RSPO-certified palm oil through Segregated or Identity Preserved supply chains?

      Book and Claim; Mass Balance; Segregated; Identity Preserved

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      105. Indonesia Sustainable Palm Oil (ISPO) certified (100%)?

      PT Hindoli has been ISPO-certified, but it is unclear if the company's other plantations are certified

    • n/a
      -
      No source

      106. Malaysia Sustainable Palm Oil (MSPO) certified?

      This indicator is disabled as it is not applicable to this company.

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      107. Certified under voluntary sustainability certification scheme (e.g. ISCC, SAN, RSB, etc.)?

      ISCC

  • Smallholders and suppliers Smallholders and suppliers 6.5 / 7 92.9%
    • Companies should report details of any programmes or schemes to support both schemed and independent smallholders, as well as criteria to assess suppliers on compliance with company policies, and in what cases suppliers should be suspended or excluded due to non-compliance.

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      108. Programme to support scheme smallholders?

      Plasma smallholders are supported to achieve RSPO certification and compliance with company policies

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      109. Number or percentage of scheme smallholders involved in programme?

      7,200 - The company is supporting 7,200 plasma smallholders in PT Poliplant towards RSPO certification. It has already helped over 14,100 other plasma smallholders achieve RSPO certification

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      110. Programme to support independent smallholders?

      The company is supporting independent smallholders in Malaysia to achieve RSPO certification. It is also working with independent smallholders in Brazil

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      111. Number or percentage of independent smallholders involved in programme?

      The company states that in Malaysia it has helped 175 independent smallholders become RSPO certified, with this number expected to increase to 265 in 2018

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      112. Process used to prioritise, assess and/or engage suppliers on compliance with company's policy and/or legal requirements?

      Supplier assessments, workshops, Aggregator/Refiner Transformation (ART) plans, site assessments, Deep Level Engagement Working Group (DLEWG), Progress Assistance Tool (PAT)

    • Partial
      0.5 / 1
      Source

      113. Suspension or exclusion criteria for suppliers?

      The company states it will "Evaluate, and will suspend, business with suppliers who are confirmed, through a credible source, audit or verification, to be in violation of our forest policy, and unwilling to remediate non-compliance issues or concerns" however no timeframes for action are given

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      114. Percentage of suppliers assessed and/or engaged on compliance with company requirements?

      The company details the percentage of the PKO volumes and CPO volumes covered by a supplier engagement program

  • Governance and grievances Governance and grievances 6 / 6 100%
    • Companies should operate in an ethical manner at all levels, providing accessible channels and clear procedures for both employees and external stakeholders to raise any grievance or complaint with the company, as well as allowing for whistleblowing.

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      115. Commitment to ethical conduct and prohibition of corruption?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      116. Whistleblowing procedure?

      The company has an "Ethics Open Line" for reporting any misconduct and sets out how whistleblowers are protected

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      117. Own grievance or complaints system?

    • Yes
      1 / 1
      Source

      118. Grievance or complaints system is accessible to internal and external stakeholders?

    • Yes
      2 / 2
      Source

      119. Details of grievances disclosed?

Media monitor: Cargill Inc

SPOTT monitors global media sources for coverage of assessed companies. The media monitor gathers reports about specific activities related to the assessment indicator categories. ZSL does not assess the validity of media coverage, but users can explore the media monitor to provide context on implementation, and infer risks associated with reported operations on the ground.

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Research protocols: Cargill Inc

Research protocols guide how ZSL conducts SPOTT assessments and allocates scores to ensure a fair and consistent approach, setting the expectations for companies on how they should publish ESG data. The full palm oil indicator framework contains 119 indicators across 10 categories, aligned with corporate reporting initiatives.

SPOTT is a ZSL initiative.
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