Liviya James

International Orangutan Day: Meet the Most Endangered Great Ape

Happy International Orangutan Day! Did you know that the rarest, most recently discovered great ape – the Tapanuli orangutan – is in danger of extinction?

Deep in the forested mountains of Sumatra, scientists identified a new species of great ape in 2017 – the Tapanuli orangutan. It was the first time since 1929 that a new species of great ape had been identified. But from the moment of discovery, the Tapanuli became the most endangered great ape in the world, with only 800 individuals left. The primary threat to their survival comes from a planned $1.6 billion hydroelectric power plant and dam project that will irreparably fragment their habitat.

Mighty Earth and our allies in Indonesia are fighting to protect the Tapanuli. We are asking Indonesian President Joko Widodo to cancel the dam project and explore alternative sources of renewable energy in the area.

We must act before the dam project permanently disrupts the habitat of the Tapanuli orangutan and contributes to the first extinction of a great ape – our closest cousins in the animal kingdom – in all our recorded history.

This International Orangutan Day, join Mighty Earth in our fight to protect the Tapanuli orangutan and sign the petition to Indonesian President Joko Widodo.

5 Facts about the Tapanuli orangutan:

  1. The Tapanuli orangutan was discovered in 2017, and is the third species of orangutan, having been separated from Bornean and Sumatran orangutans for 10,000-20,000 years.
  2. Only 800 individuals remain, making the Tapanuli the most endangered great ape.
  3. The remaining Tapanuli orangutans are divided into three populations in the Batang Toru forest; only the largest of these populations (~500 individuals) is still considered viable.
  4. The Tapanuli orangutan has a smaller head than other orangutan species
  5. The long, high-pitch call of the male Tapanuli orangutan is a mix between the calls of the males in Borneo (short, high-pitched) and Sumatra (long, low-pitched). It also lasts longer and is delivered with more pulses at a higher rate.


Male orangutans of each species: 1. Bornean, 2. Sumatran, 3. Tapanuli. Photo credit: Tim Laman/Creative Commons, via New England Primate Conservancy

Restoration & Reparations: Reforming the world’s largest rubber company

August 2019

Report documents social and environmental problems found at the Hévécam rubber plantation in southern Cameroon, which is owned by Halcyon Agri, “the world’s leading rubber franchise.” Download

A Dialogue With Halcyon -- Encouraging Change in the Rubber Industry

A Dialogue With Halcyon -- Encouraging Change in the Rubber Industry

By Etelle Higonnet 

The world of rubber has been changing at an incredible pace.

Change starts at the bottom. In the last two years, one major tire company after another has agreed to transition from destructive practices that trash the planet to a new path towards deforestation-free rubber. The tire revolution has inspired some courageous action from a few car companies who have begun embracing deforestation-free rubber as well. Since tires account for more than 2/3 of the world’s rubber demand, these reforms have, in turn, influenced major supplier companies from Asia to Africa to take notice as the industry shifts around them.

Encouraged by this progress and eager to accelerate its spread, Mighty Earth decided to investigate the supply chain of the world’s biggest rubber supplier, Halcyon — which controls 12 percent of the planet’s rubber. Positive change from this company could be key to transforming the broader industry. It was an opportunity too good to ignore. And so, drawing from my experience in the country and in corporate negotiations to promote human rights and stop forest destruction, I began to plan a visit to Cameroon. Halcyon is a major player there – the third largest employer in the country, Halcyon controls two massive plantations called Sudcam and Hevecam which, together, make up the biggest rubber concession in the world.

Upon arrival, I was immediately met by our local partner, Victorien, from the organization Appui pour la Protection de l’Environnement et le Développement (APED), the leading local NGO working in the region where Halcyon has one of its gigantic rubber plantations, Hevecam. Diving straight into work, Victorien and I finished hammering out a detailed plan to investigate a number of communities that were affected by deforestation for rubber in and around Hevecam.

We wanted to hear the whole story, and aimed to talk with communities that had been recently affected as well as those that experienced land grabbing and abuses as many as four decades ago. We were also trying to ensure an even balance of indigenous and non-indigenous communities so that everybody’s voice would be reflected in our investigation.

Upon arrival at each community – whether we had traveled by well-paved highways, bumpy back roads, or hiked on forest trails to get there – we faced a similar refrain: a litany of abuses, often with the same core messages. “We are being poisoned,” they told us. “Help us get clean water. Our forests are gone. Everything we used to live off of is poisoned, dead, gone. What will we do now?” As we continued in our interviews we learned of ongoing extensive deforestation, loss of biodiversity, and destruction of culturally significant indigenous land at the hands of Hevecam.

In this bleakness, though, one ray of hope emerged: communities reported that in the last two years, Hevecam had become slightly more receptive to their grievances. As we began asking around, it became clear that Halcyon was open to positive dialogue. Here, then, was our opportunity to act.

Two months later, I returned to Cameroon with a draft report to share with key stakeholders. We wanted to ensure that we were uplifting the voices of local stakeholders, accurately portraying their concerns, and emphasizing the right problems and proposed solutions. With the help of Victorien, as well as Cameroon’s Goldman Prize winner and NGO leader Samuel Nguiffo, we sought feedback from a platform of 50 local NGOs working to curb deforestation, called the Plateforme Forets et Communautes. The next day, we gathered in the offices of Greenpeace Cameroon to meet with our hosts and indigenous leaders from different parts of the country. These leaders came together to share their experiences, advise us on how to improve our report, and shed light on what our work should emphasize going forward. Their courage, dynamism, and constructive spirit made this day of consultation a tremendous success.

The next morning, at the crack of dawn, Victorien and I drove from Yaounde to Douala with Armelle, a colleague of Samuel’s from the organization Centre pour l’Environnement et de Développement (CED), to meet with Halcyon representatives and start our negotiations. After two days, it turned out to be one of the most positive and encouraging corporate engagement meetings that I have ever experienced.

The corporate executives were open minded, thoughtful, well-informed, and fully willing to engage. In addition to finalizing the report based on feedback we had received from civil society, NGOs, indigenous leaders, and the company itself, we were also able to respectfully and collaboratively hammer out an agreement on next steps to address past environmental and social harms.

You can see the resulting agreement here.

From beginning to end, this experience reinforced the importance of trusting in the multifaceted expertise and professionalism of local NGOs as well as the invaluable knowledge of the affected indigenous leaders. It illustrated the importance of clear, honest, and open dialogue with corporations and the value of finding corporate interlocutors who are truly open to meaningful change.

Mighty Earth hosted a special Facebook Live event, ‘Convening Truth to Power: Cleaning Up the Rubber Supply Chain‘ where I discussed the power of investigations, working with local communities to speak truth to power, and the importance of this accomplishment in light of the current state of rubber sustainability.

Mighty Earth was honored to help highlight existing problems and to reach such a positive outcome by working with companies, NGOs and other stakeholders towards a solution. We’re hopeful this journey will help put rubber and tire companies on the right path, as they help realign an entire industry to protect forests, farmers, and regular folks.

Dialogue avec Halcyon -- Encourager le changement dans l'industrie du caoutchouc

Dialogue avec Halcyon -- Encourager le changement dans l'industrie du caoutchouc 

By Etelle Higonnet 

The world of rubber  é evolved e  at an impressive rate. 

Often, the change  comes from below . Over the last two years,  major tire manufacturers, one after the other, have agreed to abandon destructive practices for the planet towards a rubber without deforestation. This revolution of the tire inspired courageous actions from quelq ues automakers who set  them  also to adopt without deforestation rubber. As tires account for more than two-thirds of global rubber demand, these reforms have in turn prompted major suppliers, from Asia to  Africa, to take into account developments in this sector. 

Encouraged by this progress and eager to accelerate its  spread , Mighty  Earth  is investigating the supply chain of Halcyon, the world’s largest supplier of rubber, which alone controls 12 percent of the world’s rubber. the planet. A positive change from this company could be the key to a reconversion of the whole  sector The opportunity was too good not to seize it. Thus , based on my experience in the country and in negotiations with business to promote human rights and stop the destruction of forests, I began planning a visit to Cameroon. The third largest employer in the country, this company  controls two large plantations, Sudcam and Hévécam which  together form the largest rubber concession in the world. 

When I arrived, I was greeted by our local partner, Victorien, a member of APED, the main local NGO working in the region where Halcyon owns Hévécam, one of  his huge rubber plantations. We  immediately  got to work. Together, we  developed  a detailed plan for a survey of a number of communities affected by deforestation for rubber, on the Hevecam plan and in the surrounding area.  

We wanted to hear  the story  from A to Z . That is why we wanted to talk with communities recently affected by deforestation ,  but also with those who were victims of land grabbing and abuse more than forty years ago. We have also striven to strike a balance between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal communities so that everyone’s voice is taken into account in our inquiry. 

  Whether we used well-paved roads, rugged secondary roads or forest trails to get into these communities,  we  heard the same chorus every time . A litany of abuse,  accompanied by the same messages  : ” We are poisoned Help us get clean water. Our forests are gone. Tu s  our livelihoods have been poisoned, died, have disappeared. What are we going to do now ?  By continuing our discussions, we learned  that Hevecam continued to clear large-scale land, impoverish biodiversity and destroy indigenous lands of first- rate cultural  significance    

But in this dark picture, a ray of hope  is emerging  on the horizon : the common Autes have indicated that over the past two years, had become HEVECAM e  a little more receptive to their  grievances .  As the  interviews progressed, it became clear that Halcyon had been open to a positive dialogue. This is where  we have to act .  

D them months later , I e  was  returned  to Cameroon  with a draft report  that I wanted to share  with key stakeholders. We wanted to make sure that the voices of local stakeholders were heard, to accurately represent their concerns and to focus on the relevant issues and proposed solutions. With the help of Victorian and Samuel  Nguiffo , winner  Goldman Prize  of Cameroon e Director  of an NGO, we solicited feedback from a platform 50 local NGOs  fighting  against deforestation, Forest and Community Platform . The next day, we gathered in the offices of Greenpeace Cameroon to meet our guests and indigenous leaders from different parts of the country. These leaders  shared  their experiences, we  have  helped  am im prove our report and we  have informed  this on what our work should focus in the future. G hanks to their courage, dynamism and constructive spirit , c ette consultation day was a huge success  

 The next day, at dawn, Victorian and I drove from Yaoundé to Douala, with Armelle, a colleague of Samuel of the organization Center for Environment and Development (CED),  to  meet , for two days,  the Halcyon representatives and begin our negotiations. Today I can say that it his meeting  corporate commitment s was found to be one of the  most positive and  d are more encouraging than  I have ever  had.   

The company’s leaders  have been  open-minded, thoughtful, knowledgeable and fully committed. In addition to finalizing the report  thanks to the  observations of civil society, NGOs, indigenous leaders and the company itself, we were also able to conclude, with respect and collaboration, an agreement on next  steps to address past environmental and social harms.  

You can read here the resulting agreement.  

From beginning to end, this experience reinforced our belief in the importance of the multifaceted expertise and professionalism of local NGOs, as well as the invaluable knowledge of the Aboriginal leaders involved. She demonstrated  the importance of establishing  a clear dialogue, honest and open with business, and  to e  find interlocutors  open to a  real change    

Mighty  Earth  had the honor of contributing to highlight  existing problems and to get a result  very  positive  thanks to the collaboration of  companies,  of GOs and  d are other stakeholders . Together ,  we worked  to  find a solution . We are  fully  confident that this trip will help put companies caoutcho uc and tire on track,  everything  as they contribute to redirect  an entire sector of the industry to protect forests, farmers and citizens . 

The new green bond may address one-third of deforestation in the Brazilian Cerrado

Written by Ashley Song

Deforestation in Brazil reached a record high in May of this year, and it’s possible that 2019 will be one of the worst years for deforestation within the country. Agricultural expansion — especially for soybean production and cattle grazing — is the leading cause of this environmental destruction, threatening the well-being of local communities, endangering wildlife, and contributing to climate change. In response to this devastation, the world’s first financial vehicle to offer green bonds for sustainable soy production was launched on July 4 at London Climate Week.

The goal of the green bond is to drive large-scale environmental change by providing low-interest credit lines to Brazilian soy and corn farmers who commit to avoiding deforestation. The bond aims to transfer $1 billion to more than one thousand medium-sized farmers (those operating one to six thousand hectares of land) within the next four years. If this new financial tool succeeds in changing on-farm practices, it could save 1 million hectares and eliminate 250 million tons of CO2.

Our Soy and Cattle Rapid Response program, developed in partnership with Aidenvironment, is monitoring native vegetation clearance across the Brazilian Cerrado, the world’s most biodiverse savannah. Each report highlights a selection of recent cases of clearance, prioritized based on known value chain links. In our first three reports, released in June and July, 36 farms cleared a total of 45,802 hectares. Of these properties, more than 40 percent were medium-sized and therefore qualified to benefit from the green bond. However, these farms accounted for just one-third of the native vegetation clearance included in our reports, while large farms were responsible for nearly all the rest.

Although large farms are responsible for an overall higher total of clearance, we found that medium farms are deforesting greater proportions of their properties.Whether or not the green bond is able to effectively address this higher rate of clearance among medium-sized farmers is an open question.

New Report: Steel Industry Vulnerable, Must Prepare for Decarbonization

Top 20 companies are not on pace to hit critical emissions reductions needed for 1.5-degree threshold

CDP, formerly known as Carbon Disclosure Project, published a new report assessing 20 of the largest and high-impact publicly listed steel companies on their readiness for a low-carbon transition. The report, entitled “Melting Point,” identified SSAB, ArcelorMittal, Hyundai Steel, and Tata Steel as the companies best positioned to succeed as the industry transitions to low carbonization; the least prepared companies were Inner Mongolia Baotou Steel, U.S. Steel, and Beijing Shougang. U.S. Steel, along with Nucor, declined to respond to CDP’s 2018 climate change questionnaire.

In response to the report, Mighty Earth Campaign Director Margaret Hansbrough released the following statement:

“This report is a clear signal to the steel industry and global investors that the time to act on the climate crisis is now. The transition to a low-carbon economy is coming, and implications for the entire construction sector are massive. In the next 18 months, each of the companies named in this report must step up and put forward public plans for deep decarbonization.

“This report also exposes the vulnerability of customers. Top steel consumers like Skanska, the global green construction leader, source steel directly from companies identified by CDP. General Motors and its joint ventures continue to buy from many of the companies named in the report for not doing enough to decarbonize.

“Leaders and investors in the auto and construction industries need to step up in an unprecedented way to begin the hard but critical work of decarbonizing their steel supply chains.”

The IPCC reported that in order to keep global temperature rise below 1.5 degrees Celsius, industrial emissions must be cut in half in the next ten years. In 2018, Mighty Earth launched a global campaign focused on cleaning up the steel industry, which accounts for an estimated 8 percent of global emissions, and is pushing major producers and their customers to commit to carbon neutrality. Mighty Earth published a report in October 2018 calling for Nucor to adopt new practices and for its customers to hold it accountable to climate action.

Earlier this year, steel producer ArcelorMittal pledged carbon neutrality in Europe by 2050 and consumer Skanska UK pledged total carbon neutrality for its supply chain by 2045.

CDP and Mighty Earth are both members of ResponsibleSteel, a coalition which will set standards and certification plans for the steel industry by 2020. To access the CDP report, please visit

As Massive Dead Zone Blooms in Gulf, Hold Industrial Farming Companies Responsible

Today, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced that scientists have determined that this year’s Gulf of Mexico “dead zone” is 6,952 square miles, nearly the size of New Jersey. In response, Mighty Earth Campaign Director Lucia von Reusner released the following statement:

“The collapse of one of our most important watersheds is tragic not only because of its size, impact on marine life, and consequences on Gulf economies – but because it’s entirely predictable and preventable. Uncontrolled runoff from industrial meat production flushed down the Mississippi River into the Gulf of Mexico is known to be the main source of pollution causing the dead zone. The raw sewage from livestock waste and runoff from grain fields washing into waterways across the Midwest has reached crisis levels – contaminating drinking water, causing toxic algae blooms, and deoxygenating important waterways throughout the Mississippi River watershed.

“The very predictability of this crisis is the most damning indictment. America’s meat companies know where their waste is going and what effect it has on water quality, but are content to leave these problems to communities downstream that have to foot the bill. This is shameless corporate abuse of our public waterways. It is time the companies responsible are held to account for cleaning up American waterways.

“As climate-fueled flooding becomes commonplace in America, the industrial meat companies like JBS and Cargill that are responsible for driving polluting farming practices must immediately take action to implement protections for America’s water.”

A recent Mighty Earth analysis showed that nearly 220 million tons of untreated animal waste and other pollutants washed freely off industrial farms into the Mississippi River watershed in 2018, endangering local water quality and ultimately contributing to the toxic algal blooms fueling the annual Gulf dead zone. This is 500 times more raw sewage than New York City produced during the same year. America’s largest meat companies have concentrated their slaughterhouses and processing facilities near waterways throughout the Mississippi River Basin that are increasingly prone to flooding, while failing to develop and implement practices to protect water quality.

Agricultural giant JBS, responsible for 80 million tons of pollution in 2018, was the top polluter identified in the analysis, while Cargill and Tyson were the most vulnerable to flooding. Polluted runoff from fields producing the vast quantities of animal feed used by these companies is another major source of water contamination causing the dead zone.

This announcement comes shortly after the publication of Mighty Earth’s “Cargill: Worst Company in the World” report, which documents decades of bad acts by Cargill and calls on the company to take action to address the negative impacts of its massive supply chain. Cargill is the second-largest feed beef processor in North America and the largest supplier of ground beef in the world.

Additional Resources:

Mighty Earth responds to deforestation spike in the Amazon

New government data shows that 1,345 sq km of the Brazilian Amazon have been cleared in the month of July alone, an area greater than the city of Los Angeles. In response to this announcement, Mighty Earth CEO Glenn Hurowitz released the following statement:

“It’s not just President Bolsonaro who is to blame for this massive increase in Brazilian deforestation, it’s also the international companies like Cargill and JBS that are making it possible. These companies are the ones financing the deforestation and exporting meat and animal feed around the world. On a day when heat records are being shattered across Europe, it’s time for Cargill and other companies to stop buying from deforesters. We’re concerned that the combination of Bolsonaro’s weakening of environmental enforcement and the new Europe-Mercosur trade deal will only provide more opportunities for outlaw companies like Cargill to recklessly finance deforestation. Consumers should tell customers of deforestation – companies like Stop & Shop, Giant, and McDonald’s – to call on their suppliers to end their complicity in Brazil’s massive deforestation.”

Judge Cargill on Implementation, Not Commitments

Agribusiness giant Cargill recently made a pledge regarding greenhouse gas emissions from its beef operations in North America. In response to this latest announcement, Mighty Earth CEO Glenn Hurowitz released the following statement:

"Once again, Cargill’s executives and PR teams have gotten the headlines they wanted after a splashy announcement. But as we documented in our recent report, Cargill: The Worst Company in the World, Cargill’s big announcements are too often just a prelude to failure and disappointment.

"In this case, Cargill’s commitment seems bogus on its face. Rather than committing to actually cutting its climate impact, Cargill is just committing to reducing the 'intensity' of its emissions. In contrast, Smithfield Pork has committed to reduce absolute emissions by 25 percent by 2025, a real goal that they’re well on their way to achieving. Meanwhile, Cargill continues to drive large-scale destruction of native habitat and water and climate pollution throughout its meat supply chain.

"Time and time again, Cargill has proven to be either unwilling or too incompetent to make the modest improvements needed to put their business on a sustainable trajectory, and the promised changes never arrive.

"In 2014, Cargill pledged to great fanfare to end deforestation from the production of key agricultural commodities by 2020. Now that 2020 is just around the corner, they have admitted that goal will not be met and pledged only half measures in response. This is simply how they operate.

"At this point, it’s irresponsible to take Cargill at their word. Cargill should be judged on implementation, not commitments. In the face of our planet’s urgent climate crisis, more empty promises are simply not enough."

Produsen Minyak Sawit Raksasa Korindo Dinyatakan Bersalah atas Tuduhan Perusakan Hutan Hujan dan Pelanggaran HAM

Forest Stewardship Council menemukan bahwa Korindo telah melanggar standar organisasi dan menganjurkan langkah-langkah dan remediasi untuk menghindari disasosiasi

Setelah proses investigasi yang berlangsung selama dua tahun atas pengaduan yang diajukan oleh Mighty Earth, Board of International Directors dari Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), sebuah badan sertifikasi global yang memastikan pengelolaan hutan secara bertanggung jawab, hari ini menindaklanjuti kasus Korindo Group yang telah lama tertunda.

Korindo Group adalah konglomerat penebangan dan kelapa sawit Korea-Indonesia yang selama ini terlibat dalam deforestasi berskala besar di Papua dan Maluku Utara, Indonesia. Keterlibatan perusahaan ini terungkap dalam laporan berjudul “Burning Paradise” yang disusun oleh Mighty Earth.  Selama bertahun-tahun, Korindo telah menggunakan label eco-forestry dari FSC untuk menyembunyikan praktik-praktik destruktifnya. Korindo menjual kayu, kayu lapis, bubur kayu, biomassa, dan kertas koran kepada sejumlah pelanggan seperti Asia Pulp & Paper (Indonesia), APRIL (Indonesia), Sumitomo Forestry (Jepang), Oji Corporation (Jepang), Marubeni (Jepang), dan News Corps Australia.

Hari ini, FSC menyimpulkan bahwa Korindo telah melanggar ‘Policy for Association’ (Pfa) dan memberlakukan serangkaian tindakan untuk mengatasi kerusakan parah yang disebabkan oleh perusahaan tersebut. Karena pelanggaran ini, FSC mengancam akan memutuskan hubungan (diasosiasi) dengan Korindo dan mencabut semua sertifikasinya. FSC juga mewajibkan Korindo untuk menghentikan semua aksi konversi hutan dan deforestasi, mendapatkan sertifikasi FSC dalam semua aktivitas kehutanan perusahaan dan mematuhi prinsip FPIC [Free Prior and Informed Consent]. Selain itu, Korindo diharuskan untuk mengevaluasi semua dampak negatif dan memulihkan lahan yang telah mereka rusak.”

Deborah Lapidus, Senior Campaigns Director untuk Mighty Earth, memberikan pernyataan sebagai berikut:

“Dengan ini, kami berharap Korindo akan mengakhiri praktik penyalahgunaan hak-hak masyarakat setempat dan penghancuran wilayah hutan hujan. Meskipun demikian, keberhasilan atau kegagalan langkah ini tergantung pada komitmen yang dibuat oleh Korindo untuk memulihkan dampak kerusakan pada masyarakat, hutan, dan ekosistem di Papua dan Maluku Utara. Persyaratan remediasi juga harus ditentukan setelah melakukan dialog dengan masyarakat sekitar yang terkena dampak, dan tidak ditetapkan secara sepihak oleh Korindo yang pastinya berupaya untuk meminimalisasi tanggung jawabnya.

Melalui investigasinya, FSC telah memverifikasi bukti-bukti yang dikumpulkan oleh Mighty Earth dan menyatakan bahwa Korindo bersalah sebagaimana dituduhkan. Dengan melakukan deforestasi berskala besar (lebih dari 30.000 hektar selama dua tahun sebelum pengaduan diajukan), menghancurkan habitat satwa liar dan melanggar hak-hak tradisional dan hak asasi manusia, Korindo telah melanggar standar FSC dan berpotensi untuk merusak nama baik FSC. Untuk menanggapi pelanggaran ini, FSC harus memastikan Korindo bertanggung jawab penuh atas perilaku buruknya.

Namun, sayang sekali FSC memilih untuk tidak merilis temuan lengkap dari ketiga investigasi tersebut. Penting bagi masyarakat dan pemangku kepentingan yang terkena dampak untuk membaca sendiri hasil temuan tersebut sebelum Korindo mampu memutarbalikkan fakta. Pernyataan FSC tidak menyoroti seberapa parah pelanggaran yang dilakukan Korindo serta menyalahartikan temuan Panel mengenai kebakaran hutan yang dilakukan perusahaan tersebut. Kami meminta FSC untuk merilis laporan mereka secara lengkap dan tanpa bias agar semua pihak dapat menilai keefektifan tindakan remediasi yang dilaksanakan oleh Korindo.”

Mighty Earth menyerukan kepada Korindo untuk mengembalikan tanah adat, menyelesaikan isu sosial dan menanggapi keluhan, memberikan kompensasi yang adil kepada masyarakat setempat atas hilangnya lahan, sumber daya alam, dan mata pencaharian mereka, serta memulihkan ekosistem yang rusak. Jumlah biaya yang wajib dikeluarkan Korindo dalam memulihkan suatu kawasan harus setara dengan kerusakan yang telah mereka lakukan selama dua dekade terakhir.

“Jika Korindo mampu memenuhi tanggung jawab mereka dan mengeluarkan ganti rugi sebesar ratusan juta dolar, maka tindakan FSC hari ini akan menjadi preseden yang kuat. Pengumuman yang dibuat FSC hari ini juga merupakan imbauan bagi sejumlah perusahaan lain, seperti Posco International yang juga beroperasi di Papua, untuk menghentikan dan menghilangkan praktik deforestasi pada lahan-lahan yang dimiliki masyarakat setempat.”

Mighty Earth menyerukan kepada FSC untuk melakukan penyelidikan baru terhadap sejumlah organisasi bersertifikasi FSC lainnya yang terlibat dalam praktik deforestasi dan pelanggaran hak asasi manusia. Untuk itu, Mighty Earth baru-baru ini mengajukan pengaduan baru terhadap KTS Group atas pelanggaran berkelanjutan yang dilakukan organisasi tersebut terhadap Policy for Association FSC. Pengaduan tersebut juga menyertakan bukti bahwa bisnis kelapa sawit KTS, BLD Plantation, telah menebangi lebih dari 10.000 hektar hutan gambut yang kaya akan karbon di Sarawak (Malaysia) dalam kurun waktu lima tahun terakhir dan juga telah melanggar berbagai hak masyarakat setempat. Pelanggan KTS meliputi dua perusahaan kertas terbesar Indonesia, Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) dan APRIL. Keduanya tercatat memiliki komitmen untuk mematuhi kebijakan Tanpa Deforestasi, Tanpa Gambut, dan

Tanpa Eksploitasi. FSC belum mengambil keputusan apa pun untuk menindaklanjuti pengaduan ini. 

Franky Samperante dari Yayasan Pusaka mengatakan: “Selama dua dekade, Korindo telah banyak melanggar hak tanah secara diam-diam, sementara mereka bertingkah sebagai penyelamat bagi orang-orang Papua. Karena itu, masyarakat luas harus mengetahui apa yang sebenarnya terjadi di Papua dan Maluku Utara. FSC memiliki tanggung jawab untuk merilis semua temuannya secara lengkap.”

Pastor Anselmus Amo from SKP-KAMe Meruake menambahkan, “Korindo telah menghancurkan tanah dan mata pencaharian masyarakat, merampas sumber daya alam mereka, melakukan tindak kekerasan dan intimidasi terhadap banyak orang, dan juga mencemari sungai. Tak hanya itu, semua ini mereka lakukan sembari merekrut tenaga kerja yang sebagian besar berasal dari luar Indonesia. Korindo juga belum serius melakukan pemberdayaan masyarakat dalam program CSR-nya. Kami berharap FSC mau berkonsultasi langsung dengan masyarakat setempat untuk memahami tindakan buruk Korindo serta pandangan mereka mengenai kompensasi yang adil dan langkah-langkah perbaikan yang akan dilakukan. Kami tentunya siap untuk membantu.”


Informasi lebih lanjut :

Alex Armstrong

Mighty Earth

[email protected]

Ayunda Putri

Image Dynamics

0812 200 1411 / 0897 7400 788 (WhatsApp only)

[email protected]

Two-Year Investigation Finds Major Palm Oil Producer Korindo Guilty of Rainforest Destruction and Human Rights Abuses

Two-Year Investigation Finds Major Palm Oil Producer Korindo Guilty of Rainforest Destruction and Human Rights Abuses


Forest Stewardship Council concludes that Korindo violated its standards, mandates improvement and remediation measures to avoid disassociation

Today, after a two-year investigation process prompted by a complaint filed by Mighty Earth, the International Board of Directors of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), a global certification body on responsible forest management, acted in its longdelayed case against The Korindo Group.

The Korindo Group is a notorious Korean-Indonesian logging and palm oil conglomerate that has engaged in massive scale deforestation in Papua and North Maluku, Indonesia, as exposed in Mighty Earth’s “Burning Paradise” report. Yet, for years Korindo has been using the FSC’s prestigious eco-forestry label to greenwash its destructive practices. Korindo sells its timber, plywood, pulpwood, biomass, and newsprint to customers such as Asia Pulp & Paper (Indonesia), APRIL (Indonesia), Sumitomo Forestry (Japan), Oji Corporation (Japan), Marubeni (Japan), and News Corps Australia.

Today, the FSC announced its conclusion that Korindo violated its ‘Policy for Association’ and has imposed a series of measures on the company to address its liabilities for the severe damages it has caused, or else stand to be disassociated from the FSC and lose its certificates. The FSC concluded that Korindo will be required to “continue its suspension of any forest conversion and deforestation, achieve FSC certification in all its forestry operations and to comply with the principle of FPIC [Free Prior and Informed Consent]. Korindo is also required to assess past negative impact and secure remedy for it.”

Deborah Lapidus, Senior Campaigns Director at Mighty Earth, released the following statement:

“We hope this means that Korindo’s days of abusing the rights of indigenous peoples and systematically destroying vast areas of pristine rainforest with impunity are finally over. But success or failure depends on exactly what Korindo will agree to – and whether those commitments are sufficient to remedy the severe impacts Korindo has had on communities, forests, and ecosystems in Papua and North Maluku. It is critical that the remediation requirements be determined in close consultation with affected communities, and not set by Korindo which has a vested interest in minimizing its liabilities.

“The FSC’s investigation has verified the damning evidence documented by Mighty Earth and found Korindo guilty as charged. By carrying out large scale deforestation (more than 30,000 hectares in the two years prior to filing the complaint), destroying critical wildlife habitat and violating traditional and human rights, Korindo was flouting FSC standards and threatened to make a mockery of the FSC’s prestigious label. In response, it is only appropriate that the FSC makes Korindo fully accountable for its egregious conduct.

“However, it is a shame the FSC chose not to release the full findings of the three investigations it conducted concurrent with this announcement so the public and affected stakeholders could read the findings for themselves, rather than enabling Korindo to distort the facts and spin the conclusions. The FSC statement glosses over the true scale and severity of Korindo’s violations and misrepresents the Panel’s findings on fires. We call on the FSC to release the full version of the reports. Only a full, unbiased disclosure of Korindo’s wrongdoing can make it possible for the effectiveness of their remediation measures to be assessed.

“Mighty Earth calls on Korindo to return customary lands, resolve social conflicts and grievances, fairly compensate local communities for lost land, natural resources, and livelihoods, and restore damaged ecosystems. Korindo needs to finance the restoration of an area at least equivalent to that which it has destroyed over the past two decades.

“If Korindo delivers on what must be a commitment running into the hundreds of millions of dollars of liabilities, the FSC’s actions today will set a strong precedent. Today’s announcement has put other companies, like Korindo’s neighbor in Papua, Posco International, on notice that rampant deforestation and destruction of indigenous lands must be eliminated and remedied.”

Mighty Earth is calling on the FSC to pursue new investigations into the many other FSC-certified groups engaged in deforestation and human rights abuses. To that end, Mighty Earth recently filed a new complaint against the KTS Group for its continued violation of the FSC Policy for Association. The complaint documents evidence that KTS’s oil palm business, BLD Plantation, has cleared more than 10,000 hectares of carbon-rich peat forests in Sarawak (Malaysia) in the last five years and violated the rights of local indigenous people. KTS pulpwood customers include the Indonesian paper giants, Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) and APRIL, which both have No Deforestation, No Peat, and No Exploitation policies. The FSC has yet to take a decision to process this complaint.

Quotes from Indonesian partners working in Papua:

Franky Samperante from Yayasan Pusaka stated: “For two decades, Korindo has gotten away with violating land rights without exposure, while selling itself in the media as a savior to the Papuan people.  Therefore, it is important that people know the reality of what has transpired in Papua and North Maluku.  The FSC has a responsibility to release its findings in full.”

Pastor Anselmus Amo from SKP-KAMe Meruake added : “Korindo has destroyed community lands and livelihoods without people’s consent, robbed communities of their natural resources, subjected people to violence and intimidation, and polluted the rivers – all while hiring mainly workers outside Papua. Korindo is also not doing its CSR seriously. We hope the FSC will consult directly with affected communities to better understand Korindo’s bad actions and the communities’ views on what fair compensation and remediation measures would be. We stand ready to help.”

Palm Oil: Report 17

Rapid Response Monitoring System

Palm Oil, Report 17 | July 2019 

Prepared with support from MapHubs

VIew as PDF

Indonesian companies:

EvershineAsset Corporation / Everbright Resources Corporation: PT AnugerahMakmur Sejati

IncasiRaya Group: PT Arvenasepakat

CB InudstrialProduct Holding / JhonlinGroup: PT KurunSumberRezeki

Makin Group: PT MekarKaryaKahuripan

Dharma SawitNusantara Tbk(DSN Group): PT Prima SawitAndalan

KiranaMegatara: PT Putra KatinganPratama

Malaysian companies:

RGE Group: PT Usaha SawitUnggul

Shin Yang Holding SdnBhd/ Sarawak Oil Palm Bhd: DataranLinauSdnBhd(Lot 1 Block 14 MurumLD)

YuwangGroup: Empresa(M) SdnBhd(OT/0351)

RimbunanHijau: PohZhen SdnBhd

WTK Group: Southwind Plantation SdnBhd

SamlingGroup: Syarikat SamlingTimber SdnBhd(LPF 0014)

Woodman Group: AdongEstate, Part of LPF 0004

Woodman Group: LikuEstate, Part of LPF 0004

Additional Cases Identified Using Filtered GLAD Alerts: Unknown Group: PT AgroLintas Nusantara, Unknown Group: PT, TriomasForestry Development Indonesia, Unknown Group: PT RutaJonaLestari, CilandryAnkyAbadi Group: PT Citra AgroAbadi, First Borneo Group: PT WahanaHamparanHijau, First Borneo Group: PT KhatulistiwaAgroAbadi, Unknown Group: KoperasiUsaha Mandiri, Unknown Group: PT KatinganHijauLestari

Sources for supply chain information:

Supply chain information included in Rapid Response reports is based on latest publicly versions of mill disclosures and grievance logs. Mighty Earth encourages companies to send updated versions of mill disclosures as soon as they become available and any decision to suspend supplies with a given group/company listed in those mill disclosures; please send to [email protected].

Soy and Cattle: Report 3

Rapid Response Monitoring System

Soy and Cattle, Report 3 | July 2019 

Based on May 2019 alerts

Prepared with

VIew as PDF

This report presents 9 cases of deforestation alerts from DETER (System for Monitoring Deforestation on Real Time) and PRODES (Program for Deforestation Calculation) observed between 27 April and 27 May 2019, in the Amazon and Cerrado biomes within Brazil. Seven cases are linked to private properties in 7 municipalities within the states of Bahia, Piauí, Maranhão and Mato Grosso. One of the cases presents deforestation alerts found in the National Forest of Jamanxim and in overlapping areas with the PDS Vale do Jamanxim, in Novo Progresso, Pará state. The first is a category of federal natural conservation area, and the second a type of rural settlement within the national program of agrarian reform. Finally, the report presents a summary of deforestation alerts found inside Indigenous lands and details their legal status within the demarcation process, from initial stages to full recognition and demarcation.

Read more

Soy and Cattle: Report 2

Rapid Response Monitoring System

Soy and Cattle, Report 2 | July 2019 

Based on April 2019 alerts

Prepared with

VIew as PDF

The present report presents fourteen cases of deforestation alerts in Brazil observed between 27 March and 27 April 2019 by DETER (System for Monitoring Deforestation in Real Time) and PRODES (Program for Deforestation Calculation). The fourteen cases cover deforestation alerts in eight municipalities of five Brazilian states: Piauí, Bahia, Maranhão, Mato Grosso, and Roraima.


Cargill Report Citations


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  42. Cargill. (2019, February). Cargill Commitment on Human Rights. Retrieved from Cargill: https://www.
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Photo Credits:

  1. Cover: Sasin School of Management
  2. Inside Front Cover: Jim Wickens / Ecostorm
  3. Page 3: Mighty Earth
  4. Page 5: Aerovista Luchtfotografie /
  5. Page 6: Mighty Earth
  6. Page 7: Simon Mayer
  7. Page 8: Protesters: Mighty Earth; Sizzler sign: Jeremy Brooks; fish kill: Mighty Earth; Packaged meat in supermarket: US Department of Agriculture (USDA)
  8. Page 9: Big Mac: t-mizo; fish kill: Soibe / WikiMedia Commons
  9. Page 10 Palm oil nuts: Mighty Earth; shaking hands: Best Picko; dead fish: Natasha C. Dunn; Uzbek woman picking cotton: Maximum Exposure PR; dead fish: Rafael Saldaña
  10. Page 11: Supermarket meat shelves: USDA; Safeway exterior: Mike Mozart; River in Oklahoma: Toni Klemm / Flickr
  11. Page 12: Pork processing plant: USDA; Cargill Beef Plant: Bidgee / WikiMedia Commons; Brimbob: AWG97 / WikiMedia Commons; Food Safety Inspection Service inspector: USDA
  12. Page 13: Department of Labor Sign: Matt Popovich; Congreso Nacional Argentino: Agustingagliardone / WikiMedia Commons; Meat in supermarket shelves: USDA; chains and bars: Niran Phonruang
  13. Page 14: CFTC Sign: Mark Van Scyoc; Indonesian child harvesting palm fruit: Wakx / Flickr
  14. Page 15: Packaged ground beef: Hailey Godburn / KOMU News; Beardstown, Illinois fish kill: Environmental Integrity Project
  15. Page 16: Amy Duchelle / Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR)
  16. Page 17: Mighty Earth
  17. Page 18: Aulia Erlangga / CIFOR
  18. Page 19: Frans Harren
  19. Page 20: Neil Palmer / International Center for Tropical Agrigulture via CIFOR
  20. Page 21: Marco Simola / CIFOR
  21. Page 22: Mighty Earth
  22. Page 23: Rainforest: Nanang Sujana / CIFOR; MacLennan: Adrees Latif / Reuters
  23. Page 24: Mighty Earth
  24. Page 25: Jim Wickens / Ecostorm
  25. Page 26: Mighty Earth
  26. Page 27: Christoph Diewald
  27. Page 28: The Nature Conservancy
  28. Page 29: Jim Wickens / Ecostorm
  29. Page 30: Trade for Development
  30. Page 31: Daniel Rosenthal / laif / Mighty Earth
  31. Page 32: Yerimia Leo
  32. Page 33: Axel Fassio/CIFOR
  33. Page 34: Aerovista Luchtfotografie /
  34. Page 35: Roger Allen North Downs Picture Agency
  35. Page 36–37: Craig Sonter • Page 38: Photology1971 /
  36. Page 39: Gian Ehrenzeller / EPA-EFE / REX
  37. Page 40: Mighty Earth
  38. Page 41: Yudhi Mahendra / Mighty Earth
  39. Page 42: Supermarket News
  40. Page 43: Aleksandar Malivuk /
  41. Page 44–45: Eduardo Betioli /
  42. Page 46: Tim Cronin / CIFOR
  43. Pages 48, 50: Axel Fassio / CIFOR
  44. Back Cover:Jim Wickens / Ecostorm

Cargill: The Worst Company in the World

July 2019

Report documents decades of bad acts by US-based agribusiness giant, Cargill, and highlights the need for urgent action. Download

Rethinking Biodiesel Subsidies

On Monday, Congressional staffers had the opportunity to hear from experts about the climate, taxpayer, and food ramifications of biofuels and the biodiesel tax credit extension bill (H.R. Bill 3301) currently moving through Congress.

In a packed room, Former Congressman Henry Waxman, Chairman of Waxman Strategies, opened the session with remarks about his own journey. Waxman initially voted for the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), a mandate for fuel suppliers to mix a minimum percentage of ethanol into gasoline. But scientists have since proven the negative environmental impacts of biofuels as a result of indirect land use change, and Waxman now opposes the biodiesel tax credit.

“I am concerned that the passing of this extension will spur more land conversion, pollute America’s waterways and wildlife habitats, release more carbon, and support more loss of natural areas for soybean and other virgin oil production,” Waxman said at the briefing.

The first panelist, President Ryan Alexander of Taxpayers for Common Sense, discussed the financial burden for taxpayers. The biodiesel tax credit has cost taxpayers $12 billion from 2007 to 2012.  Alexander called biofuels subsidies a “triple threat” to taxpayers, via 1) the biodiesel tax credit, 2) production volume mandates such as the RFS, and 3) government spending on biomass programs.


Next, Dr. Stephanie Searle from the International Coalition on Clean Transportation spoke about the direct environmental consequences of biofuels production. Studies show that soy biodiesels are on par with or worse than fossil fuel diesel. Additionally, biofuels production drives global deforestation by increasing demand for palm oil. Dr. Searle posed the question: if it’s likely that biodiesels are worse for the planet than fossil fuels, is that a risk we are willing to take?

A graph comparing the carbon intensity of soy biodiesel to that of fossil diesel, compiled from U.S. EPA, California Air Resources Board, and European Commission studies.

Finally, Kelly Stone of Action Aid spoke to the human and food security consequences that come from biofuels production: land grabs from small farmers, increased food prices, and local environmental impacts such as water pollution. She concluded by calling for the phasing out of food-based biofuels and focusing efforts on real clean energy solutions.

To view the full presentation click here.

Standing up for forests and farmers

Mighty Earth applauds the government of Cote d’Ivoire for seeking to better protect its forests and for its willingness to move towards a greener future, putting behind the bitter past of losing 85 percent of its forests since 1990. Likewise, we welcome positive elements in the new Ivorian forest code, recently adopted by the Ivorian National Assembly.

However—we are gravely concerned by the implications of mass evictions from parks and protected areas.  Incentivized by decades of the $100-billion-a-year chocolate industry turning a bind eye to forest destruction and funding illegal cocoa production in these areas, 1.5 - 2 million people thought to be living illegally in the parks and protected areas of Cote d’Ivoire and Ghana

In its declaration, the Ministre des Eaux et Forêts was clear that protected areas will be emptied of their inhabitants.

We call urgently for the recognition and respect of the human rights of these  inhabitants. These people have rights and must be protected from abuses.

Published below is our recent Joint Human Rights Watch-Mighty Earth Cote d'Ivoire Dispatch regarding the urgent need to guarantee the human rights of illegal cocoa farmers. Also below is  a 2018 open letter, co-signed by Mighty Earth, Human Rights Watch (HRW), Le Regroupement des Acteurs Ivoiriens des Droits de l'Homme(RAIDH), and Fern, regarding egregious abuses of illegal cocoa farmers inside the Ivorian national park of Marahoue.

This previously unpublished letter presents the findings of a joint investigation to the government of Cote d’Ivoire.  Following unsuccessful negotiations with the government, led by senior environmental advisor to the president, Dr. Mamadou Fofana, authorities declared that the government of Cote d’Ivoire would refuse to hold any perpetrators accountable or to compensate victims in any way. Given the risks that farmers now face, the Marahoue case has renewed relevance, and so we publish it today, along with videos and photos taken during the Marahoue field investigation.

We call on the Ivorian authorities to protect human rights and allow independent civil society monitors to observe any actions taken. In parallel, we call upon the chocolate industry to create a humanitarian aid fund to compensate farmers who are expelled from parks and protected areas. Having created the conditions leading to the illegal occupations of these areas the industry has a moral responsibility to finance solutions, and assist expelled farmers in rebuilding their lives.

Farmers Face New Round of Eviction from Protected Forests in Côte d’Ivoire

Government Should Ensure Small-Scale Farmers Receive Adequate Notice, Compensation

Jim Wormington, Researcher, Human Rights Watch
Etelle Higonnet, Campaign and Legal Director, Mighty Earth

Côte d’Ivoire, fighting widespread and rapidly advancing deforestation, is embarking on an ambitious plan to reclaim and rehabilitate its forests. As it moves to protect a key national resource, the government needs to be careful not to trample of the rights of the thousands of small-scale farmers now facing eviction.

Côte d’Ivoire has seen its forest decline from 50 percent of its territory in 1900 to less than 12 percent in 2015. Much of the deforestation has been driven by Côte d’Ivoire’s cocoa industry – the world’s biggest – with the government estimating between 30 and 40 percent of cocoa comes from protected forests. Most cocoa is produced by small-scale farmers who receive only a fraction of the profits from crop sales.

In June 2018, Côte d’Ivoire published a new forestry policy that would convert most of its decimated protected forests to Agro-Forests, with multinational companies – mostly from the lucrative global chocolate industry – responsible for developing sustainable agroforestry cocoa farming methods. For the remaining forests, the Ministry for Water and Forests proposes to strictly enforce long-neglected laws banning farming and occupying protected forests and national parks.

The implementation of the new forestry policy will likely result in the evictions of thousands of small-scale cocoa farmers, with an estimated 1.5 to 2 million cocoa farmers living in protected forests and national parks in Côte d’Ivoire and neighboring Ghana. The Ivorian protected forest of Scio, for example, where thousands of people live, reportedly received notice of an eviction operation planned for July.

Although the Ivorian government has the right to reclaim forests intended for conservation, international law protects anyone who occupies land from forced evictions that do not respect the dignity and rights of those affected, regardless of where they are living.

Past eviction operations in Côte d’Ivoire have left farmers’ families without adequate shelter, food, and education, and we have documented extortion, corruption, and physical abuses committed by government agents conducting evictions. In an October 2017 letter on the creation of Agro-Forests, we also warned that large agricultural companies often fail to protect the rights of small-scale farmers, especially when national regulations are unclear or not enforced.

The Ivorian government is right to want to protect and rehabilitate forests. But it should ensure that evictions are only used as a last resort and farmers receive adequate notice, compensation for property and crops, and assistance finding new land or obtaining new livelihoods. Measures to protect the environment, such as the protection of protected forests, should be implemented while respecting the rights of those who live in the area.

This piece is crossposted from Human Rights Watch

More photos and videos.

Read Marahoue letter in French here.

Read Marahoue letter in English here.

Cargill Named "Worst Company in the World"

Cargill Named "Worst Company in the World"

New report documents US-based agribusiness giant’s “ineptitude and incoherence at a grand scale.”

This press release is available in French, Spanish, Dutch, Portuguese and German.

July 11, 2019

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – Environmental campaign organization Mighty Earth announced today that it had named Minnesota-based Cargill as the “Worst Company in the World” due to its unscrupulous business practices, environmental destruction, and repeated insistence on standing in the way of global progress on sustainability. Mighty Earth’s new report, “Cargill: The Worst Company in the World,” documents decades of bad acts by the company and highlights the need for urgent action. The report is available in Spanish, Dutch, French, Portuguese and German.

“In my 40-year long career in Congress, I took on a range of companies that engaged in abusive practices,” former congressman and Mighty Earth Chairman Henry Waxman writes in the report. “I have seen firsthand the harmful impact of businesses that do not bring their ethics with them to work. But Cargill stands out.”

“As one of the largest companies in the world, Cargill has a responsibility to address its outsized impact,” Mighty Earth CEO Glenn Hurowitz said. “Mighty Earth runs campaigns around the globe to advocate for sustainable business practices, and Cargill kept showing up when our investigations identified bad actors. Whether we were working on palm oil in Southeast Asia, cocoa farming in West Africa, or soy cultivation in South America, Cargill was always there, ready to thwart progress and impede joint conservation efforts. Given their ubiquity and obstinance, we decided it was time to take a closer look at their checkered past.”

For months, Mighty Earth has engaged in discussions with Cargill, including at the CEO level, to address the report’s findings and seek long-term solutions. Mighty Earth has served as a key convener for other sectors – including rubber, chocolate, and palm oil – as those companies sought to improve their environmental standards and impacts. However, Cargill has refused, time and time again, to substantively address the problems Mighty Earth identified. Instead, Cargill continues to prioritize the deforesters in its supply chains over the climate or their customers’ sustainability demands.

“In press releases and public statements, the agribusiness giant Cargill presents itself as frustrated with deforestation, as though it were some externality they have no control over, like bad weather,” Hurowitz said. “But deforestation isn’t something that’s happening to Cargill, it’s something that Cargill is doing.”

Mighty Earth’s new report identifies Ahold Delhaize – an international supermarket giant that owns Stop & Shop, Giant, Food Lion, Hannaford, and many other brands – as a key customer of Cargill that could take immediate action. Ahold Delhaize, despite its own corporate sustainability pledges, recently broke ground on a new meat packaging facility in Rhode Island as a joint venture with Cargill.

“It’s important for Ahold Delhaize and other Cargill customers to set new sourcing standards that eliminate deforestation from their supply chains. They have the power to force Cargill’s hand, but continued inaction makes them complicit in Cargill’s malfeasance,” said Mighty Earth Senior Director for Forests Mat Jacobson. “Cargill has only gotten away with its bad behavior for so long because it is not a consumer-facing brand. But if folks knew the food they get at McDonald’s, Stop & Shop, or Target was destroying the rainforests or had been produced with child slavery, they’d be shocked.”

The release of Mighty Earth’s groundbreaking report kicks-off a multimillion-dollar, multi-year campaign targeting Cargill and its customers that will urge the agribusiness giant to eliminate deforestation and human rights abuses from its supply chain. To launch the campaign, local Mighty Earth activists and allies including Minnesota Clean Water Action honored Cargill for its dubious distinction with a rally outside Cargill headquarters in Minnesota at which it awarded the company a “thumbs down” placard.

About the Report

Major findings:

  • Cargill is poised to further wreak havoc on fragile ecosystems in Brazil, taking advantage of President Bolsonaro’s rollback of vital environmental protections. In 2014, Cargill pledged to end deforestation for all commodities in its supply chain by 2020. With just one year left, Cargill has continued to incentivize deforestation, remained one of the worst actors on the world stage, and now stands poised to embrace the dawning of a Bolsonaro-era free-for-all in Brazil’s forests.
  • In November 2017, Cargill was fined $10 million by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission for years of deliberately misreporting its trade values – by up to 90 percent – in order to defraud both the government and its trading partners. In October 2018, David Dines, the Cargill executive responsible for these violations, was promoted to Chief Financial Officer.
  • Indigenous peoples who depend on forests have had their land encroached upon by Cargill-linked soy plantations in Brazil. They have been forced off of their traditional lands and have experienced sharp increases in cancer, birth defects, miscarriages, and other illnesses linked to pesticides and herbicides used to grow soy – often sprayed by planes directly overhead.
  • Cargill is one of the top ten polluters in the US food industry for more than a dozen pollutants, including formaldehyde, lead, asbestos, hydrogen cyanide, and mercury.

Photo and video assets relating to the report and Cargill’s operations across different commodities are available for media.

Contact: Alex Armstrong, [email protected]

A Timeline of Bad Behavior - Citations

That Cargill would make a grand commitment and then ignore it shouldn’t be a big surprise.

From having their membership in the Chicago Board of Trade suspended shortly after incorporating for trying to corner the market on corn and artificially drive up its price, to being responsible for the distribution of  more than 150,000 pounds of contaminated beef to supermarkets just last year

— Cargill has a long and sordid history of duplicity, deception and destruction. Just the past two de- cades provide dozens of examples.

Deadly Listeria Outbreak:


50,000 fish killed: 


Fecal Contamination:


Salmonella outbreak:


Quote from Food & Water Watch Executive Director Wenonah Hauter:


15 to 50 times the limit:


A quarter of a million pounder:




More than 60 million gallons of toxic waste:,-fla.,-creek


Price Fixing Corn Syrup:


Forced child labor:


Uzbeki Slavery:


More dead fish:


Systematic Violations:


Poultry waste:


Coli Recalls 845,000 Pounds of Beef:


Salmonella in 15 States:


20,000 Pounds of Ground Beef Contaminated:


Coli Down Under:


…And more E. Coli:


Intimidating Villagers in Indonesia:


40 Cases of Salmonella in 8 States:,_CDC_Update,_August_6,_2012.pdf


181 Cases of Salmonella Across 37 States:


Systematic Gender and Racial Discrimination:


Tax Evasion:


OSHA Citation:


Palm Oil from Child and Slave Labor:


Illegal Land Grabbing in Colombia:


Child Labor, Land Grabbing and Deforestation in SE Asia:


Concealing Huge Markups:


Child Slavery Lawsuit Moves Forward:


Lagoon Breach Fish Kill:


E Coli Outbreak Across Nation:


Price Fixing for Road Salt in Ohio: