InfoSAWIT, SIAK - Serikat Petani Kelapa Sawit (SPKS) District of Siak had a visit from the Ambassador of European Union, H.E Vincent Piket in Village of Belutu, Sub district of Kandis, District of Siak, Riau Province on Tuesday (16/11/2021).
Chairman of SPKS District of Siak, Ridwan said, the Ambassador Vincent visited smallholders’ plantations – the members of SPKS – in person and did discuss with them too. Ridwan told, the visit was important for the smallholders to directly tell the Ambassador that smallholders’ cultivation has fulfilled sustainability standards according to what European Union’s regulates.
For information, SPKS is smallholders’ organization with 72 smallholders having about less than 8 hectares of palm oil plantations in Kalimantan and Sumatera. SPKS has run some programs, such as facilitating legal to smallholders by mapping their plantations, conducting trainings about cultivation, developing groups, and getting sustainable certificate process. Of the programs, the mapping process just covers 14 thousand smallholders.
“SPKS just wants to confirm that every sustainable palm oil supply from its members, fulfill high standards and no illegal plantations or deforestation,” Ridwan said, as in the official statement to InfoSAWIT, Wednesday (17/11/2021).
General Secretary of SPKS, Mansuetus Darto said, SPKS takes many countries in European Union through the Ambassador to cooperate, and get solution on what smallholders faced, such as, the mapping, trainings, namely to fulfill every standard in European Union.
“If European Union wants sustainable trade and non-deforestation supply, take every smallholder for they get impacts from illegal big palm oil plantations. European Union should also conduct traceability and confirm that smallholders who implement sustainable practices should be the prior. European Union should transform to smallholders,” Darto who just got Leadership Award 2021 from Yayasan Penghargaan Prestasi Indonesia, said.
Ambassador Vincent said, European Union still needs palm oil from Indonesia that smallholders produced. But the continent requires sustainability standards and prioritizes from Indonesia. The standards are about to confirm that it was not from deforestation and also to stop deforestation.
He continued that the meeting with smallholders is important to know what their opinion about every issue facing sustainable standards as European Union publishes.
A smallholder who attended the meeting, Asmudi complained about fertilizers and access of fund that many smallholders do not enjoy still. Chairman of Koperasi Makmur Belutu Barokah, Sukardi told what they did to realize sustainable palm oil practices, such as, facing issues with surrounding companies operating in their regions, planting intercrops for food needs.
Meanwhile, Regent of Siak, H. Alfedri said that the district runs Siak Hijau which means, a vision to realize green development that many organizations support. The prior is to maintain peat by increasing productivity and smallholders’ capacity.
“This is our priority we have to encourage in every region of Siak. Every side, including the members of SPKS would support vision of district, Siak Hijau,” Alfredi said. (T2)