Palm Plantations

Sustainable and responsible palm development that protects forests and respects communities

We operate three plantation areas in Gabon in central Africa as a joint venture partnership with the Republic of Gabon, known as Olam Palm Gabon.

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This partnership is part of the government’s plan to kick-start the agricultural economy to broad-base the Gabon economy, reduce food imports, create employment opportunities and tackle poverty.  As a sustainable and responsible business, Olam Palm Gabon approach is helping to addresses these inter-connected challenges.

In developing the plantations, detailed independent third party assessments were conducted on selected lands to assess the suitability from an agricultural, biodiversity and social perspective in order to meet the requirements of our Sustainable Palm Oil Policy. Olam identified and set aside 50 per cent of our concession as conservation area.

From an overall concession area of 144,000 hectares (ha), we have planted 64,000 ha which includes the rehabilitation of an oil palm plantation acquired from SIAT in 2016. We are protecting 72,000 ha of High Conservation Value (HCV) forest and other areas such as buffer zones.

In 2011 we were the first company to apply the RSPO’s new plantings procedures in Africa for the Awala plantation. To date 55,385 ha of our palm plantations in Gabon are RSPO certified and we are on track to achieve 100 per cent RSPO certification of our operations in Gabon by 2021. Gabon’s lands are also protected through a National Parks network (11% of land area), and all forestry concessions are subject to the country’s sustainable forestry laws.

The investment in palm plantations in Gabon has created employment opportunities for about 9,000 Gabonese nationals, of whom many had never previously had permanent employment. We have invested heavily in training to develop the range of new skills required on a palm plantation and its associated activities.

Earning the social license to operate is integral to the successful long-term development and management of plantations. From the outset we have engaged with communities through the process of Free Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) with 32 villages in the proximity of the plantations and have established social contracts across all of these villages.

Read more about our approach to engaging and supporting communities here.

Where are Olam's plantations located.

From a concession area of 144,000 hectares (ha), we have planted 64,000 ha, which includes the rehabilitation of a palm oil plantation acquired from SIAT in 2016. Of this, 55,385 ha are already RSPO certified and we are on track for 100% by 2021.

Within the concession we are protecting 72,000 ha of High Conservation Value forest and other areas such as buffer zones.  

We were the first company to meet the RSPO’s New Plantings requirements in Africa in 2011 for the Awala Plantation.   

Location
Total Area
HCV and Buffer zones
Planted
Infrastructure and others
Completion date
Awala

 20,030

12,482

6,810

726

End 2016

Mouila 1*

 35,354

18,323

15,885

1,147

End 2017

Mouila Lot 2*

 31,800

 21,543

 9,060

1,197

 2017

Mouila Lot 3 and Lot 3 extension*

 38,363

18,765

18,272

1,325

2017

Makouke***

18,707

1,319

5,733

683

2017

Total

144,254

72,432

55,772

5,078

Ongoing

 

*Including community enclave area, unplantable zone

**Including mill, housing, office, road, nursery etc.

***Only conservation area established within replanting area, HCV, HCS and ESIA studies are ongoing in new planting area.

31,890 hectares not included in this table were returned to the Republic of Gabon having been ruled completely unsuitable for certified palm.

 

All agri-businesses need to optimise the finite amount of land suitable for feeding the world’s growing population. In Gabon we have invested in a Centre of Excellence which undertakes testing and analysis of plant tissues, soils, fertilisers and water. We are collaborating with research organisations, such as Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory (TLL) and the National University of Singapore (NUS), the Agropolis Fondation in France, and the Commonwealth Organisation (CSIRO) in Australia to carry out research and development in oil palm to improve operational efficiencies, productivity and yields.

Reports and Assessments
  • Awala Palm Oil Mill RSPO Certification Report Download [2MB, PDF]
  • Mouila 1 Download [3.9MB, ZIP]
  • Mouila 2 Download [3.8MB, ZIP]
  • Mouila 3 Download [12.7MB, ZIP]
  • Olam RSPO-NPP Notification-Kango Download [616KB, PDF]
  • Summary Report of Planning and Management Download [2.6MB, PDF]
  • RSPO P and C Public Summary Report Template Download [2MB, PDF]
  • Olam Awala Annual Surveillance POM RSPO PC Public Summary Report ASA1 2017 Download [2.2MB, PDF]
  • Summary Report for Olam Palm HCV assessments_Final.16.01.11 Download [7.8MB, PDF]
  • GRAINE-Ndendee-Summary-Report-of-SEIA-and-HCV Download [2.7MB, PDF]
  • GRAINE-Ndende-NPP-Notification Download [504KB, PDF]

Want to Know More

Palm Dashboard

In January 2018, we also launched our Palm Dashboard to chart progress against our roadmap of commitments detailed in the Sustainable Palm Oil Policy.

Palm Dashboard Mill List

We publish our Mill List quarterly in conjunction with our Palm Dashboard. 

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