Spotlight on Colombia

Increasing import sustainable palm oil in Europe

In Colombia, oil palm is one of the ‘peace’ crops and I believe the country has potential to become a leading exporter of sustainable palm oil to Europe. For Colombian palm oil farmers sustainable palm oil has substantially improved their lives after a long period of armed conflict.

This autumn I spoke on behalf of the European Palm Oil Alliance at the 19th International Oil Palm Conference of Fedepalma in Cartagena, Colombia. I stressed the importance of cooperation with palm oil producers, including Colombia, to rebalance the palm oil image in Europe.

Prior to the congress I visited a number of palm oil farmers, plantations and industry and could speak with civil society organizations and government. I learned that oil palm in Colombia is unique and differentiates itself by emphasizing commitments to economic, environmental and social sustainable development. A great opportunity!

Frans Claassen,

Chair European Palm Oil Alliance