Chocolate, biscuits & confectionery of Europe

Vision to stop deforestation

European Sustainable Palm Oil Advocacy Group Vision to stop deforestation

CAOBISCO and the European Sustainable Palm Oil Advocacy Group (ESPOAG) supports the EU objective to stop deforestation by 2030, at the latest, and the promotion of this objective at international level. The sectors ESPOAG represents recognize the important role they play in acting as a responsible steward of forests and natural habitat. Throughout our memberships, companies are taking a proactive role in tackling deforestation through improved traceability and supplier engagement.


Private sector engagements to improve on sustainability & halt deforestation in palm oil production

Steady progress is made every year, but the challenge to reach the target of 100% certified sustainable palm oil in Europe remains significant. ESPOAG is working actively on the impediments and obstacles to further progress.

With increased understanding and environmental consciousness within the palm oil sector in the past decade, private sector actors and other stakeholders engaged on the issue. They came together to define and apply criteria for good practices in agriculture and in the value chain in order to preserve land considered of high value for biodiversity and carbon storage, through a credible set of global standards. European food sectors are working closely with stakeholders all along the supply chain - producers, refiners, retailers, non-governmental organizations - to drive sustainable palm oil production.


ESPOAG believes that deforestation is a global problem with local solutions: the EU should aim at finding an approach which can deliver local results.

  • Since deforestation is closely correlated with economic and social development of communities, making reference in bilateral agreements to sustainable development objectives would be the most effective means to stop deforestation across the globe.
  • Environmental policies and regulations, and their enforcement in producing countries, remain critical to ensuring biodiversity and environmental protection, as well as to preventing deforestation. A careful distinction needs to be made between illegal deforestation and products that have been legally produced in accordance with the national legislation of the producing country.

  • Technological aid and know-how and financial support to smallholders is needed to be able to increase yields and adhere to the sustainable development objectives.  Another important factor for success is collaboration with producing countries by exchanging information about state-of-the-art, sustainable and economically viable business practices

  • ESPOAG encourages further alignment on definitions, criteria and standards to set a common goal for sustainable palm oil and for the reduction of deforestation. ESPOAG is of the opinion that in developing specific EU policies on deforestation, the EU Commission should define a sustainability baseline for crops contributing to deforestation against which local production systems could be benchmarked, granting the existing schemes like RSPO, a role in future EU policies and/or bilateral trade agreements on deforestation.

Read below the ESPOAG Position paper on palm oil production and deforestation (in PDF).

Read more here about ESPOAG