Grupo Bimbo today announced a new policy to strengthen its commitment to build a fully traceable and responsibly source palm oil supply chain that will protect communities, workers and the environment.
“This new policy enhances our company’s long standing environmental and social commitments which have continued to strengthen and evolve over the years,” said Daniel Servitje, Chairman of the Board and CEO of Grupo Bimbo.
“Our company will build a transparent global supply chain by mapping our palm oil supply back to the plantations of origin, and will require our suppliers to commit to producing and sourcing palm oil from companies that comply with our policies throughout their entire operations and land holding,” stated David Hernández, Chief Procurement Officer.
The new policy requirements include: no deforestation, no development of peatland (regardless of depth), no exploitation of Indigenous peoples, workers and local communities, and traceability. The no deforestation requirement includes the prohibition of development on both High Conservation Value (HCV) areas and High Carbon Stock (HCS) forests. Furthermore, suppliers will not use burning for land clearing, replanting, or other developments. Suppliers that do not meet these standards could face loss of their contracts with the company.
This policy covers palm oil, palm kernel oil, and any palm oil derivatives used in Grupo Bimbo products worldwide. Suppliers will be required to achieve traceability to the mill and to the plantation level.
To comply with this policy, Grupo Bimbo will have an action plan in place by the end of 2015. It also commits to reporting on its implementation twice a year. The company will engage with credible partners in order to map and assess its supply chain, and develop an action plan to work with suppliers and other third parties to achieve and verify full company-wide compliance.
Grupo Bimbo first formalized its commitment to the responsible use of natural resources and energy in its production and distribution processes in 1991. Since then, it has developed specific plans, programs and policies that further this objective. In 2002, the company implemented a comprehensive environmental management system in all its production plants in Mexico, and five years later launched worldwide the “Committed to the Environment” program, known today as Planet Pillar, with the aim of reducing the environmental impact of all its operations.
In 2009, Grupo Bimbo joined the Consumer Goods Forum, and within the next five years it became a signatory of New York Declaration on Forests as well as the UN Global Compact. Through these agreements, the company has committed to protecting fundamental human rights and contributing to achieving zero net deforestation by 2020. Grupo Bimbo’s palm oil policy builds on and goes beyond these existing commitments to ensure no-deforestation and no-exploitation in palm oil sourced by the company.