This post was originally published on December 1, 2020 and updated on March 31, 2021.

While palm oil is already one of the most environmentally friendly vegetable oils on earth, many global corporations such as Coca-Cola, Nestle and Unilever are committed to only using the most earth-friendly palm oil by insisting that it is produced sustainably. How is this possible from thousands of miles away? Increasingly, companies are using Blockchain technology.  

Blockchain is an encrypted digital ledger using a smartphone app

The app enables the palm oil to be traced from the exact oil palm tree where the fruit was harvested through the milling, shipping, manufacturing and finished product. Once data is recorded, timestamped and encrypted, it’s difficult to change. 

Malaysia’s palm oil industry is already the global leader in palm oil sustainability. Because Blockchain is significantly more efficient than paper tracking, it is propelling Malaysia even further ahead in this category. It provides an unprecedented level of trust in the supply chain, including the working conditions on plantations. 

In addition to providing real-time traceability of palm oil plant to plate, it provides Malaysia’s palm oil industry with greater crop management data and insights, as well as digital inventories of the plantations among other benefits. 

Another way to trace Malaysia’s certified sustainable palm oil 

Malaysia has made great strides in implementing its mandatory national MSPO certification program, with approximately 88 percent of the oil palm plantations and nearly all 452 palm oil mills now MSPO-certified as sustainably produced. 

Buyers can confirm if the palm oil they are purchasing is sourced from MSPO-certified supply chain using the MSPO Trace app, launched in November 2019. The app pulls data from the MSPO certification database.

As demand for sustainable palm oil grows, these technologies are simplifying the ability for manufacturers and consumers to choose this responsibly produced ingredient. 

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