KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA — The Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil has certified the mills and supply base of Agropalma, a leader in South America’s palm oil industry. It is the inaugural certification of sustainable palm oil in Brazil.

“With the certification of Agropalma in Brazil, R.S.P.O. marks a new phase of expansion in Latin America,” said Darrel Webber, secretary general of the R.S.P.O. “We commend and applaud Agropalma as well as our R.S.P.O. members from around the world for their leadership, contribution and dedication toward promoting sustainable palm oil and for seeking harmony through diversity.”

Marcello Brito, commercial and sustainability director of the Agropalma Group, said, “The certification ensures the viability of sustainable production at the moment when we observe an increase in deforestation in the Amazon sphere. With this achievement, the Agropalma Group clearly illustrates the feasibility of developing a major crop production in the Brazilian Amazon region, according to the most relevant economic and social/environmental criteria, thus becoming an example to other producers and a new paradigm in the palm oil production in Brazil.”

The certified production area of sustainable palm oil globally is now over 1 million hectares (about 2.5 million acres). The global production of certified sustainable palm oil is now close to 5 million tonnes and represents an increasing volume of about 10% of global palm oil production.

The R.S.P.O.’s mission is to change the palm oil market into one that is both environmentally and socially sustainable. R.S.P.O. membership has increased by 30% since the beginning of 2011 and now includes more than 650 member organizations from 50 countries. Members include consumer goods manufacturers, processors, traders, financial institutions, retailers and non-governmental organizations.