As a smallholder


Support fund

The RSPO Smallholder Support Fund (RSSF) provides financial support for oil palm smallholders to help improve their livelihoods through sustainable agricultural practices.

With this support, RSPO aims to help smallholders increase their yields and remove obstacles to reach international markets. The Fund’s objective for smallholders is to reduce the negative impacts of oil palm cultivation on ecosystems and improve livelihoods, creating a space where palm oil, local communities, and the environment can coexist in harmony.

Find out more about how the RSSF works, which smallholder groups can apply, and what activities can be funded in the video below.

Overview of how RSSF works


Who can apply for RSSF?

  • An independent smallholder group in the oil palm sector seeking fund assistance
  • A legal entity
  • Groups or organisations with sufficient experience working with smallholders can apply on behalf of the smallholder group, with a clear intention of supporting them
  • Organisations who wish to support and promote the production of sustainable palm oil


What can the RSSF be used for?

  • Smallholder Certification Audit Cost (one-off only): 100% of the audit costs for all potential certification processes of Independent Smallholder Groups per applicant. The funding does not include Pre-Audit Assessment.
  • Other incidental costs quoted by the Certification Body, namely auditors’ travel expenses, accommodation and per diem for audit purposes, may also be reimbursed based on actual expenses incurred.

RSSF applications must be submitted prior to the audit as the fund applicant will be required to provide three (3) quotations from three (3) Certification Bodies. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

  1. Please download and complete the proposal template as per application requirement.
  2. Once the template is completed, please submit the full proposal to [email protected].
  3. For more information or guidance about the RSSF application process, please send an email to [email protected].


What to expect after submitting an RSSF application

Applications for funding the Smallholder Certification Audit Cost are open throughout the year. All applications received will be reviewed by the RSSF Fund Manager before being shared with the RSSF Panel for consideration. The RSSF Fund Manager will thereafter communicate the outcome of the decision.

Submission of Application / Proposal
Smallholders / Group Manager
Appraisal review and assessment of application proposal
Fund Manager and Regional Representative(s), where present
Up to 6 weeks upon receiving application
Decision of application
Fund Manager, Regional Representative(s), Smallholder Fund Panel (SFP), where present
Up to 4 weeks from appraisal review
Note: Unsuccessful applicant(s) can resubmit proposals and will be treated as new applications.
Announcement of decision to applicants
Fund Manager and Regional Representative(s), where present
Up to 2 weeks from decision
Contracting of grant agreement
Fund Manager and Regional Representative(s), where present
Up to 8 weeks from decision
Fund Manager or Regional Representative(s)
As and when RSPO and fund recipient to arrange monitoring

RSSF by the numbers

These are the regions where the RSSF has directly supported its Independent Smallholder beneficiaries since 2014.

* Data as of February 2020

No of individual SH benefitted
Collective total size of farms (ha)




Latin America












Photo Credit: RSPO/PT. BGA