L'Oréal and Beiersdorf among the few companies tackling deforestation, according to CDP

L'Oréal has been named as one of the companies leading the way when it comes to sustainable sourcing of palm oil

L'Oréal has been named as one of the companies leading the way when it comes to sustainable sourcing of palm oil.

The beauty giant was singled out, alongside German consumer goods manufacturer Beiersdorf AG, in a recent sustainability report from the environmental non-profit organization CDP addressing corporations and the protection of forests.

"To encourage its suppliers to manage their forest footprint, L'Oréal has developed its Sustainable Palm Index, to assess suppliers' commitments and achievements in fighting deforestation," the CDP reported this week.

However, the report -- dubbed ‘The Money Trees' -- also found that several major corporations are avoiding transparency when it comes to deforestation. The CDP and other organizations asked 1,500 companies judged to have a significant on forests to provide data on their impact via CDP's reporting platform in 2018, but 70% neglected to do so. More than 350 major companies have not submitted data for the three years from 2016 through 2018, including apparel giants Next and Sports Direct. The corporations were asked to disclose data regarding timber, palm oil, cattle and soy, as well as detailing their actions taken to reduce deforestation in their supply chains.

"For too long corporations have ignored the impacts of their supply chains on the world's forests and have not taken seriously the risks this poses -- both to their business and the world," said Morgan Gillespy, Global Director of Forests at CDP, in a statement. "Environmental concern is at an all-time high, and companies are being demanded to be transparent and take decisive action to protect forests. Consumers increasingly want to know that their shopping basket isn't driving the destruction of the Amazon, extinction of the orangutans and the climate crisis."

A total of 306 companies reported data to CDP in 2018, with 24% showing no or limited action to reduce deforestation. The report concluded that the corporate transparency rate of 30% on forests remains significantly lower than that for issues such as climate change and water security -- both of which have a transparency rate of 43%.

For more information, see https://www.cdp.net/en/research/global-reports/the-money-trees