February 22, 2023 (San Francisco, CA) — Rainforest Action Network has issued a response to Nestlé’s recently published Action Plan on “Indigenous Peoples’ and Local Communities Land Rights.” The plan outlines steps the company will take to ensure land rights are respected in its operations, supply chains and through its business relationships. Nestlé is the first brand profiled in RAN’s Keep Forest Standing campaign to publish a dedicated action plan on respecting the land rights of Indigenous Peoples’ and local communities.
Daniel Carrillo, Forest Campaign Director at Rainforest Action Network, issued the following response:
“We welcome Nestlé’s action plan as urgent intervention is needed to address the violations of Indigenous Peoples rights in the operations of the corporations it does business with.
“RAN has documented the violation of Indigenous Peoples’ land rights by two corporate groups that are major players in the palm oil and forestry sectors in Indonesia and that are suppliers to Nestlé — The Harita Group and Royal Golden Eagle Group. The companies lack adequate policies and procedures to ensure Indigenous Peoples impacted by their operations are able to give or withhold their Free, Prior and Informed consent to development on their territories.
“Nestlé must put this plan into immediate action to ensure the rights of the Long Isun and Pargaman Bintang Maria communities are respected. The company must also bring forward the date set to report on the plan’s implementation from 2025 to 2023.
“Nestlé must strengthen its policies and this action plan to ensure land rights are respected across the operations of the corporate groups it does business with, including cases where its palm oil suppliers are violating Indigenous Peoples rights in their logging and forestry operations.
“We encourage Procter & Gamble, Mondelēz and other brands that are complicit in the violation of Indigenous Rights to follow Nestlé’s lead and disclose dedicated policies and action plans to ensure the corporate groups they do business are upholding Indigenous Rights and remedying the harm caused to affected communities.”
Rainforest Action Network’s Keep Forest Standing campaign scores major brands and banks on the policies and actions taken to address their role in driving deforestation and human rights violations. Nestlé received a failing grade of a ‘D’ due to major shortcomings in its ‘No Deforestation, No Peatland and No Exploitation’ policies — which do not require their suppliers of forest-risk commodities to adhere to NDPE requirements across the entire operations of the corporate groups they do business with — and the lack of robust procedures to enforce its policies and require suppliers to provide proof of Free, Prior and Informed Consent for their developments.
RAN’s 2022 Keep Forest Standing scorecard report
RAN’s case on the violation of Indigenous Rights by the Harita Group
RAN’s case on the violation of Indigenous Rights by the Royal Golden Eagle Group
RAN’s evaluation of the FPIC policies of Nestlé’s suppliers