Walmart rejects Greenpeace report

Land Clearance in West Kalimantan

Shamed by Greenpeace for doing business with an allegedly notorious destroyer of Indonesian forests, US supermarket giant Walmart is fighting back.

The giant retailer said it was “surprised” to be included on Greenpeace’s blacklist because it did not source paper products from Indonesian company Asia Pulp and Paper (APP) for its “largest markets”.

We were surprised Greenpeace would single us out in their press release as we have been in ongoing discussions with them and continue to partner on a variety of projects around the world. Walmart does not support deforestation, and as Greenpeace’s report shows, our largest markets do not source product from APP, and in the remaining markets that do, we have taken the steps to stop development on private brand products with APP and are looking at what measures can be taken regarding branded products. Globally, we are committed to traceability in the timber supply chain, and we work closely with government, NGO and supplier partners to build a better, more transparent, and more sustainable supply system.

I’m not sure “taking steps” and “looking at” measures really stacks up to action, or whether it matters one jot whether Walmart is sourcing material from APP only for its non-major markets.

You can read Greenpeace’s report here.

French retail company Carrefour was also singled out in the report. According to The Jakarta Post, it has announced it will now drop all supplies of paper products from Sinar Mas subsidiary APP.

“Carrefour is committed to sustainable development and has decided to cease sourcing of APP supplies for private label products from mid-year this year until further notice,” Carrefour Indonesia external communication manager Hendri Satrio was quoted as saying.

Will it also drop APP products from its Chinese market? And what about palm oil? Will it stop selling Sinar Mas-branded palm oil products in Indonesia?

(Photo courtesy of Greenpeace)

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