Solidaridad & UNIDO empower Juaben Oil Mills toward RSPO certification

Juaben Oil Mills Limited, a Ghanaian oil palm processing company, is now certified by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) Supply Chain Standard after meeting all the requirements related to the control of certified oil palm products in the supply chain.

Juaben and Solidaridad officials display the new RSPO certificate

Juaben is the first indigenous Ghanaian company to attain the certification. The company made the significant stride to meet the requirements of the standard after years of a comprehensive process. Solidaridad provided technical support and guidance through its Sustainable West Africa Palm Oil Programme (SWAPP), partnering with the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) Global Quality and Standard Programme.    

Solidaridad’s contribution to Juaben’s RSPO Certification 

Juaben Oil Mills Limited’s certification process started in July 2012, under the first phase of SWAPP with a baseline audit by Proforest, an implementing partner of the programme. The initial goal was to certify the mill and nucleus plantation.

Solidaridad prepared policies and procedures, social and environmental impact assessments, training sessions for relevant staff and other tailor-made training for oil palm growers to help them understand the certification requirements. With a renewed interest to go through the RSPO certification process, after an initial unsuccessful attempt, Juaben Oil Mills enrolled in UNIDO’s Global Quality and Standards Programme, which is funded by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), with continued guidance from Solidaridad under the second phase of SWAPP. 

Juaben Oil Mills Limited was one of five companies screened in Ghana by the Global Quality and Standard Programme and chosen from fifty listed companies to receive support in RSPO certification. In May 2020, selected company staff participated in relevant virtual training jointly organized by Solidaridad and UNIDO. 

In March 2022, the company received certification as an independent mill that handles RSPO certified oil palm products.

Presentation of RSPO certificate

During a ceremony to present Juaben Oil Mills Limited with the certificate, Rosemary Addico, Solidaridad programme manager, congratulated the company on behalf of Solidaridad and expressed excitement that the long and comprehensive process has finally paid off. She added that this effort should continue.

“I will encourage the company to get the nucleus plantation and the smallholders certified as has been attained for the Supply Chain Standard,” she said.

She urged the company to work hard to maintain the certificate. 

For her part, Anne Schick, acting Head of Cooperation at the Swiss Embassy in Ghana, said attaining RSPO certification is gradually becoming essential evidence of sustainable palm oil production and a way to give clients assurance that the palm oil was produced in a sustainable manner and of good quality. 

She congratulated the mill for the achievement and added that the company had charted the way for other local mills to be certified. 

Thank you to our partners, Solidaridad and UNIDO, for the tireless work and technical assistance. Congratulations to you all for the achievement and keep up the good work.

Anne Schick, acting Head of Cooperation, Swiss Embassy in Ghana

Managing Director Alex Owusu, of Jauben Oil Mills, said the processes the company has undergone to obtain the certificate have equipped them to adequately operate in an environmentally friendly and socially responsible way, to help them face any global industrial challenges in the future.

He said the goal of the company in attaining the RSPO was to expand to other parts of the world, which will enable the company to become a major player in the oil palm industry.

“With this certification, Juaben Oil Mills is well poised to transact business locally and internationally. To this effect, we pledge to maintain our status as a Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil certified company. We are grateful to all our partners and funders for their support during this journey,” he said.

The Sustainable West Africa Palm Oil Programme is funded by the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the Swiss Government through SECO.