Meet Pak Jondris Pakpahan, a palm oil Fresh Fruit Bunch (FFB) broker from Kandis Village, in central Sumatra. He collects and buys FFB from many different palm oil farmers which he then sells to the Ujung Tanjung mill owned by GAR in Rokan Hilir Regency.
He starts his day early, visiting smallholders in his area to see if any are harvesting their FFB. Once the harvesting is complete, Jondris buys and weighs the fruit and prepares to send the fruit to the mill. He generally buys FFB from around 10 farmers a day.
Today, Jondris is attending a GAR workshop where he will learn how to make his FFB traceable. Jondris is excited about the workshop, “I think it is a good initiative by the Company to raise awareness about traceability and through this training we will help the farmers understand why it is good to supply information about their FFB”.
Traceability or mapping of the supply chain is about knowing exactly where our raw materials such as palm oil FFB come from: which plantation, who owns the plantation and the precise location of the plantation. By getting to know all our suppliers, we can engage with them and help them become more sustainable.
Daniel Prakarsa, Head of Downstream Sustainability Implementation at GAR says “What we want to achieve from the training and workshop today is the start of what we believe will be a pioneering effort in our supply chain practices and we are ready to assist our famers improve their sustainability standards”.
GAR’s traceability to the plantation plan (TTP) builds on the first phase of our supply chain mapping. In December 2015, GAR completed mapping 489 individual mills supplying its eight downstream facilities in Indonesia. We are now working with mills such as the Ujung Tanjung mill to map the supply chain all the way back to the plantation or FFB.
As it’s a new process for many, the mapping will take time and GAR will have to reach out to many stakeholders like Jondris to ensure they understand the process and how to carry it out.
In the workshop, Jondris, other FFB brokers and farmers learn how to use traceability tools and processes like finding location coordinates of their plantation by using their smartphones. They are also shown how to complete documentation which they will need to do every time they receive FFB from the farmers.
Providing this information will help them access global markets where there is a growing customer demand for greater transparency.
GAR wants to bring all its suppliers along on its sustainability journey. Achieving full traceability to the plantation will help GAR do this. GAR-owned mills will complete the mapping by end-2017 and independent mills by end-2020.