The global chemicals supplier is striving to improve its processes to ensure that its products are made from sustainable sourced raw materials.
The palm oil supply chain is complex, involving challenges linked to environmental protection, human rights, economics in developing countries and international trading.
Plantations can contribute significantly to deforestation, loss of biodiversity and climate change from the loss of peatland and BASF says that it shares this concern and is committed to reducing the impact on the environment.
"Our primary concern is to ensure that our products are from sustainably sourced palm oil. We actively support the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil and have been working to foster the physical transformation of the industry," reps reiterated.
The RSPO certification process is currently the most effective initiative out there to improve the entire palm oil sector, providing infrastructure to monitor the market transformation in a transparent manner.
Thus, BASF is working on this supply chain certification for its production sites in Asia Pacific which includes Jinshan China, Kitatone in Japan and Bangpakong in Thailand.
The chemical supplier's plans include integrating additional forest conservation requirements regarding high carbon stock and peatland into its palm sourcing policy (defined by High Carbon Stock2) as well as incorporating requirements for a Free-Prior-Informed-Consent (FPIC) process.
"We will work with key stakeholders and stakeholder forums to define traceability in a way that supports the reduction of unsustainable palm oil and thus helps to stop deforestation," reps add.
Heavy investment in China in recent years...
BASF is targeting significant growth in its business in the Asia Pacific region, and has set the bar high for its plans in the China market, which is continuing to experience fast industrial and economic growth, despite a slowdown from exceptionally fast growth of the past two to three years.
In 2014, the company announced it was allocating €90 million to build additional research and developing facilities and auxiliary facilities at its existing site in Pudong.
“By 2020, around 25% of BASF’s R&D employees will be located in Asia Pacific,” said Dr. Andreas Kreimeyer, member of the Board of Executive Directors of BASF SE and Research executive director.
As well as the personal care industry, the expanded facilities will also be serving development in the home care, health and nutrition, construction and automotive industries.