Andrea Schierbaum, Accredited Assistant to Members of the European Union Parliament, asked whether independent smallholders might carry out traceability tests for their palm oil commodities. He asked the question during a virtual dialogue with Kaoem Telapak and its network on June 20, 2022.
“The Indonesian government does not provide access to information related to plantation concession lands,” said Andrea.
Intan from the Independent Small Farmers Union revealed that independent smallholders can carry out traceability tests for their commodity products. “Small independent farmers cultivate on their land,” said Intan.
Then, Intan also explained that independent oil palm farmers had received information about mapping. Then, the land that is cultivated by independent smallholders is not even from concession land. “Small independent farmers who join our organization are ready to follow EUDDR regulations,” She said.
Siswanto, a representative of the Cahaya Harapan Putra Association, conveyed the same thing but with a few conditions. “As long as it doesn’t burden farmers, it can be done,” he said.
Likewise, Rukaiyah Rafik from the Sustainable Palm Oil Farmers Forum. He said that independent smallholders can follow all regulations if it is in the interest of the environment. However, he did give some notes. Rukaiyah regrets that the traceability test only examines the origin of the commodity.
Rukaiyah believes that traceability tests should also be used to track farmers’ capacities, farmers problems, and encourage support or programs aimed at increasing farmer capacity. “We have to change the way of interpreting traceability,” he said.
In regulation no. 178/2002 on food safety, the European Union defines traceability as the ability to trace and follow a commodity at every stage, from production to distribution.
The draft European Union Due Diligence Regulation, which was released by the European Union in November 2021, mentions traceability testing as a condition for the entry of six commodities into the EU market. The commodities in question are soybeans, beef, coffee, chocolate, wood, and palm oil.