Palm Oil plantation owners and other stakeholders in this field should always strive to improve their plantation practices. One of the ways this can be accomplished is through getting certifications. Currently, the MPOCC of the Malaysian Palm Oil Certification Council has made one type of certification for oil palm smallholders.
This is known as the Malaysian Sustainable Palm Oil or MSPO Certificate.
What is the MSPO Certificate?
The MSPO certificate is an acknowledgement that the products of your plantation products are made through sustainable methods. This means there’s nothing that pollutes the environment and all processes are safe and complies Good Agricultural Practices (GAP).
The main benefit of having the MPSO certificate is that your products will be more marketable overseas. Right now, many western countries, especially the European Union, have laws against buying palm oil linked to serious environmental issues like deforestation and wildlife destruction.
When Should I Get the MSPO?
Basically, the Malaysian Palm Oil Board, under the Ministry of Primary Industries, is trying to get all palm oil plantations certified with the MSPO. This certificate ensures that certain standards of agricultural practices are met within your plantation or palm oil processing plant. It was first announced in 2013 but started out as a voluntary program.
However, in 2017, the announcement was made to make it mandatory for oil palm plantations and factories to be MSPO certified in three stages. The first two phases involved larger plantations and factories who previously had RSPO (Roundtable of Sustainable Oil Palm) certificates and those who did not have RSPO certification. The first phase ended in December 2018 while the second phase ends in June 2019.
The third and final phase involves all oil palm smallholders. Oil palm smallholders are compulsory to have this MSPO certification by 31st December 2019. Therefore if you haven’t started with the process, now is the time to do it.
How Do I Get The MSPO?
As a plantation owner, you should first submit an application to MPOB after consultation. After that, you will undergo two stages of audits and one peer review. If you pass all that, then the MPSO certificate will be issued to your plantation. However, that is not the end as there will be an annual re-evaluation so that the certificate can be renewed.
What Are The Benefits of Having the MPSO?
The MPSO certificate will give you an edge over competitors as it will ensure consumers and business partners know that your agricultural practices are safe for the environment and sustainable. Additionally, here are some other benefits listed out by MPOB:
- Continuous and increased production of fresh fruit bunches
- The rights of plantation owners will be ensured
- Better access to bank loans and capitals
- Cleaner environment for future generations
- A thorough record of your plantation management
- Minimizes the misuse of MPOB certificates and FFB theft
- Gaining the confidence and satisfaction of stakeholders
If you’re interested in more information on the MSPO, please visit the official MPOB website here.