Cargill Joins Palm-Oil Makers to Pledge Forest Protection

Sept. 23 (Bloomberg) — Cargill Inc. joined the world’s
largest makers of palm oil in a pledge to prevent deforestation
and vowed to work with Indonesia, the biggest global producer,
to implement policies that will protect forests.

Cargill announced its action today at the United Nations
summit on climate change with more than 20 producers that
account for about half of all palm-oil consumption. Consumers
have been pressing the makers of products such as candy and
cookies using palm oil to stop clearing forests to plant new

“The last few months have seen a welcome race to the
top,” Paul Polman, chief executive officer of Unilever NV, said
in a statement announcing the effort. “Consumers have sent
companies a clear signal that they do not want their purchasing
habits to drive deforestation and companies are responding.”

Unilever has pledged forestry protection as part of its
sourcing of palm oil, the world’s most-consumed vegetable oil,
used by Kellogg Co. to make Pop-Tarts, Mondelez International
to produce Oreo cookies and Mars Inc. to make Twix candy

Deforestation contributes to climate change when trees are
chopped down to clear forests then are burned, releasing the
carbon dioxide that has been absorbed through the leaves.

The effort seeks to cut by half the loss of forests by
2020, and eliminate all deforestation by 2030, a move that
environmental groups said could eliminate up to 8.8 billion tons
of carbon dioxide each year. The agreement also calls for
restoring more than 350 million hectares (864.9 million acres)
of forests and croplands.

As part of today’s forestry pledges, Norway, the U.K.,
Germany and others pledged $1 billion to persuade developing
countries such as Liberia and Peru to preserve their forests.

To contact the reporter on this story:
Mark Drajem in Washington at

To contact the editors responsible for this story:
Jon Morgan at
Steve Geimann

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