In line with RSPO’s commitment to achieving sustainability within the palm oil sector and ensuring that gender equality and the United Nations’ Women’s Economic Empowerment principles are applied and promoted, RSPO, in consultation with Fair & Sustainable Consulting, have developed a Practical Guidance on Gender Inclusion and Compliance to the 2018 RSPO Principles and Criteria (P&C) and the 2019 Independent Smallholder (ISH) Standard, which was endorsed by the Standard Standing Committee on 25th March 2021. To ensure feedback from all stakeholders, a 30-day public consultation period was held from 26 August 2020 to 23 September 2020.

This guidance is intended to be used as a logical manual that describes the building blocks of a gender-inclusive business, specifically for the palm oil sector, and embraces the United Nations’ Women’s Economic Empowerment principles. It aims to assist RSPO members to adopt best practices that promote the concept of gender balance in their operations, using the RSPO standards, while focusing on meeting specific criteria and indicators of the 2018 P&C and 2019 ISH standard.

Although this guidance is not meant to be an overall solution to gender inequality within the sector, it will assist companies in taking the necessary steps towards developing a strategy to close the gender gap by expanding women's economic opportunities, increasing awareness and education among the workforce, and ensuring compliance to gender-related requirements of the 2018 RSPO P&C and 2019 ISH Standard.

Part V of the Gender Guidance makes reference to a Gender Scan tool. To access the tool you may click here

RSPO hopes that this guidance document will encourage stakeholders to take greater strides in supporting gender inclusivity and balance within their respective organisations.

If you have any enquiries, please contact RSPO’s Human Rights and Social Standards Sr. Executive, Prasad Vijaya Segaran, at [email protected].

For more information on RSPO’s Human Rights and Social Standards unit, click here.

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