When it comes to protecting rainforests, Procter & Gamble (P&G) has taken a big step backward.

By Rainforest Action Network

In June, the company quietly published a revised Forest Commodity Policy that, in spite of public commitments to intact forests and forest communities, actually weakens the company’s forests standards. A close read of P&G’s new policy reveals that it is no longer prohibiting forest degradation caused by industrial logging in its wood pulp supply chain. This new loophole will have devastating consequences in the last remaining Intact forest landscapes

Rainforest Action Network has continued to ramp up the pressure on P&G, demanding that the maker of popular cleaning and personal care products cut ties with Royal Golden Eagle (RGE), a supplier with deep ties to land grabs in Indigenous territories in North Sumatra, Indonesia. We are also calling on them to improve their policies to uphold Indigenous land rights and obtain Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) of impacted Indigenous communities.

This spring, a delegation of Indonesian Indigenous leaders from partner organization KSPPM, a Sumatra-based human rights and forest advocacy organization, were invited to Cincinnati for a meeting with P&G executives to discuss their demands. Following the meeting, RAN staff and the delegation joined with Cincinnati activists and local leaders to march from Cincinnati City Hall to the P&G headquarters in solidarity for forests and environmental justice — drawing attention to the company’s failure to address its role in driving the destruction of climate-critical forests around the world and bringing our demand set to their front doors.

And again in the fall, we escalated pressure in the month leading up to P&G’s Annual General Meeting (AGM), where leaders and shareholders come together to discuss and vote on key issues. RAN led a month-long organizing project, in partnership with a broad coalition of climate, forest, and human rights advocates. Organizers and activists led direct action trainings and community building events and built awareness around P&G’s destructive policies by holding a presence at college campuses and high profile events — where P&G is typically seen as a sponsor or community leader and sheltered from negative public opinion.

The month of action culminated in a powerful statement aimed to communicate the urgency of the crisis and the role P&G continues to have in rampant destructive practices: Days before the meeting, we dropped a 37 foot banner with the message P&G: Stop Forest Destruction over one of Cincinnati’s most prominent bridges, urging P&G to take immediate action.

The day of the AGM, we brought our message back to P&G’s door, with a rally of over 100 people, including Cincinnati community members, activists from across the globe and descendents of the Procter and Gamble founding families., We gathered to say “Enough is Enough — Deforestation and Human Rights Abuses Must Stop.”