Managing Grievances

[GRI 3-3, 304-1, 304-2,304-3]

Any confirmed non-compliance with our NDPE commitments triggers our grievance mechanism, ensuring that we are responsive in monitoring compliance and held accountable through increased transparency.

The grievance procedure is available to individuals, government organisations, and NGOs, all of whom can file grievances against SDP and our suppliers. Grievances can also be raised through external platforms, like the RSPO complaints system.

We verify every claim we receive and publish quarterly updates on our investigations on our Supplier Grievance Register. We also make available grievance data on our Crosscheck platform to help stakeholders understand issues based on their location and links to other actors in the supply chain. We maintain regular communication with impacted stakeholders and grievance filers to address their concerns whilst investigations are in progress. We recognise that resolving complex grievances may require lengthy verification and mediation measures but are committed to addressing all grievances in a fully transparent and accountable manner.

We have publicly shared grievance updates since 2015. As of December 2021, there is one outstanding case against SDP in the RSPO complaints system regarding our previous investment in PT Mistra Austral Sejahtera (PT MAS).

From 2015 to 2021, a total of 80 cases against third-party suppliers were filed in our Supplier Grievance Register. Most of these cases are related to indirect suppliers who supply SDP via traders. As of December 2021, we have resolved 60% of these cases. We are monitoring and engaging with suppliers involved in 13% of these cases, and a further 6% are still under investigation.

The remaining 20% of all cases involve suppliers that are no longer in our supply chain for one of three reasons. A supplier may have been suspended or excluded due to non-conformance, no longer supplies a third-party trader for commercial reasons, or is still within a third-party sellers’ supply base but banned from selling indirectly to SDP.

As of December 2021, SDP ceased purchasing from three direct suppliers due to non-conformance. Two of these three are no longer in our supply chain for violating our Draw the Line Policy. SDP is currently engaging with these suppliers to assess their progress against their NDPE commitments. If they meet our strict conditions, we may resume commercial relationships with them. Whilst direct relations with the remaining non-conforming supplier have ceased, there is a chance of the mill re-appearing in our supply base indirectly through spot market transactions. It is difficult to ensure these mills will not appear in future spot market supplies, but SDP welcomes new solutions preventing their re-appearance when they are made available.

The majority of grievances filed concern deforestation and peat clearance detected by our satellite alert systems or raised by stakeholders. As of December 2021, we have detected potential forest and peatland clearing related to our suppliers on approximately 32,456 hectares. We are actively monitoring these cases and are actively engaging affected suppliers to work towards a resolution. To date, there has been no illegal or non-compliant land clearing detected at our own operations.

Our grievance register can be found on our Responsible Sourcing page, under Supplier Risk Assessment

See updates on the ongoing RSPO case in Upholding rights of Communities