At the recently hosted UK Members Meet up in London, RSPO Members discussed how due diligence provisions in the UK Environment Act help to tackle the presence of illegal deforestation in UK supply chains and how this links to the European Union’s Due Diligence Regulation (EUDR). 

The UK has 470 RSPO Members, ranking third in the world in terms of membership. As a mature market, the UK has contributed significantly towards the sustainable sourcing of palm products, making it one of the most advanced markets in addressing complex sustainability issues in the palm oil supply chain. 

The Members Day in London encompassed a diverse array of sessions focused on the RSPO’s three key missions – Certification, Communication, and Collaboration – with the aim of identifying opportunities and tools to strengthen the business case for sustainably produced palm oil. 

Challenges of UK industries in European palm oil market

Despite being a major player in the EU market,  the UK is in fact outside the EU-27 bloc, giving rise to its own unique set of challenges for UK industries in the European palm oil market. Emily Fripp from Efeca, an organisation that provides specialised advice on responsible sourcing, sustainable trade and use of agricultural and forest commodities pointed out that a key challenge included the development  of compliance mechanisms for both the EUDR and the UK Environment Act. Nicola Hopley from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), outlined the major components of the UK regulation, which goes further in product scope but has a smaller business-size scope than the EUDR. Both engaged the audience in an animated discussion about the analogies and discrepancies between the two regulatory systems.

PRISMA: Supporting members in EUDR compliance

Member companies in the UK had the opportunity to understand how the RSPO’s new certification, trade and traceability platform could help navigate these compliance-related challenges. PRISMA, which stands for “Palm Resource Information and Sustainability Management,” aims to enhance trade and compliance to meet current and emerging global regulations. It organises information and optimises efficiency, enhancing alignment and accountability. Standardising audit reports within PRISMA’s certification module enables better data analytics, improving adherence to the RSPO Standards overall, and providing a dynamic and responsive framework to adapt to the evolving global sustainability landscape. 

Aryo Gustomo, RSPO’s Director of Assurance, discussed the rollout of PRISMA, which is on track to be launched in Q4 2024, in time to aid UK members in demonstrating compliance with the EUDR. 

Meaningful partnerships backed by data-driven communication 

Alongside the tackling of regulatory headwinds, member companies can leverage data to inspire change and communicate the environmental and social benefits of sustainable palm oil. Annual impact updates and reports from RSPO are an invaluable tool for companies to discuss their collective impact in growing the sustainable palm oil footprint. 

RSPO Communications Manager (Europe), Kimasha Williams urged members to leverage such tools and data to help substantiate market and product claims and create persuasive, insightful content to strengthen the sustainable palm oil narrative in the UK and Europe. 

Francesca Morgante, Senior Market Transformation Manager discussed RSPO’s approaching 20th anniversary, themed Partners for the Next 20, urging Members to strengthen collaboration through their invaluable National Initiatives, by endorsing the Sustainable Palm Oil Dialogue (SPOD) Manifesto and actively engaging across sourcing, landscape approaches, smallholder inclusion and communication; and by participating in the Next 20 campaign by proactively communicating how their companies have contributed to the development of sustainable palm oil over the past two decades. 

Other topics covered during the sessions included Supply Chain Certification and the Shared Responsibility framework. 

RSPO Members who were unable to attend can request the presentation deck. Please send an email to [email protected]

Get Involved

Whether you’re an individual or an organisation, you can join the global partnership to make palm oil sustainable.

As an individual

Take a stand for sustainable palm oil. See how you can influence brands and businesses.

More on individual action

As a smallholder

Discover how using sustainable farming practices through RSPO Certification can increase your yield and more.

More on smallholder impact

As an organisation

Reduce negative social and environmental impacts through producing and sourcing certified sustainable palm oil.

More on organisation influence

As a member

Quickly access resources, news and content that is important to you.

More on member content