The Sustainable Palm Oil Transparency Toolkit (SPOTT) is an online platform providing practical tools and information for all stakeholders in the palm oil supply chain, including scored assessments for 50 of the world’s largest palm oil producing companies, helping to monitor the industry’s negative environmental impacts.
On the homepage, you will find the following features:
Latest Company Scores showing the most transparent companies, least transparent companies and companies with the most improved scores. Monitor corporate transparency via our interactive companies scorecard, assessments and satellite map. See below for further information on the company scores and using the mapping tool.
Resources for the supply chain containing information, tools, reports and case studies about and for all stakeholders.
You can also consult the Resources section for libraries of links and infographics, images and videos, and a popup glossary of technical terms. Sign up to our email newsletter and stay up to date with current developments in the palm oil industry.
How to use:
ZSL’s SPOTT features a companies scorecard assessing 50 of the world’s largest palm oil producers using publicly available information about the sustainability of their operations. ZSL selected the 50 companies based on market capitalization, land area and nominations by SPOTT users, who can use the company assessments to inform how they buy from, engage with, or invest in oil palm growing companies.
SPOTT generates percentage scores for each company based on their performance against more than 50 best practice indicators across seven categories, including their reporting to RSPO and availability of High Conservation Value (HCV) and Social and Environmental Impact Assessments, as well as policies and procedures on land acquisition, gaining informed consent, pesticide use, and greenhouse gas emissions reduction, among many others.
The scores for each indicator category are totalled to calculate an overall percentage score per company. Since company operations vary in scope, some indicators are disabled for companies to which they do not apply, so that their percentage scores are weighted accordingly.
Scores are traffic light colour-coded to give a quick indication of performance:
- red indicates a total score of less than 33%
- amber indicates a total score between 33% and 66%
- green indicates a total score over 66%
SPOTT allows users to rank companies by score, or other factors such as whether they are RSPO members, their landbank for oil palm cultivation and their market capitalization. Trends indicate whether the company’s score has increased, decreased, or remained unchanged since the last update.
All 50 companies featured in SPOTT are listed in alphabetical order. This list view table contains the following information on all 50 companies:
- Company name
- Whether or not the company is an RSPO member
- Company headquarters
- Landbank for oil palm cultivation
- Market capitalization
- Score change since the previous assessment
The Change column indicates whether the company’s score has:
- increased (▲, positive)
- decreased (▼, negative)
- or remained unchanged (—) since the last update.
Users can also query our database to compare up to five companies simultaneously against specific indicators.
On the Indicators and research protocols page, the table compares how different companies performed across each indicator category. The seven icons that appear along the top of the table represent the indicator categories; hold your cursor over each icon for its name.
Each company’s total indicator assessment score is colour-coded to give a quick indication of performance:
- red indicates a total score of between 0-33%
- amber indicates a total score of between 33.1-66%
- green indicates a total score of between 66.1-100%
Click on any company’s company name in this table to go their individual company page.
Each of the 50 companies have their own dedicated and regularly updated company pages, accessible via the scorecard on the Companies page.
Each company page begins with the company’s current percentage score, followed by five sections:
- Company Profile
- Company Assessment
- Trend Tracker
- Media Monitor
- Map of Concessions
The company profile contains the following information, where available:
- Parent company
- Revenue from oil palm cultivation
- Market capitalization
- Stock market tickers (Bloomberg/Thomson Reuters)
- ISIN (International Securities Identification Number)
- RSPO membership
- Involvement in other initiatives
- Links to other companies on the SPOTT scorecard
- Company’s website
- Company’s latest annual report
- Company’s latest sustainability report (if applicable)
Below these sections is each company’s indicator assessment, the results of which are split into seven indicator categories. Click on any of the seven categories and a drop down table will appear displaying the results under the following headings:
- Further information
Next, the Trend Tracker shows the company’s score changes across seven indicator categories over time.
SPOTT’s Media Monitor gathers reports and stories from global media sources, covering specific company activities related to the environmental management (deforestation and wildlife conflict) and zero burning (fires and haze) categories.
Finally, below the company’s indicator assessment you will find the mapping tool, specifically tailored to each company page.
ZSL has partnered with the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), the World Resources Institute (WRI) and other organisations to display company concession boundaries on our interactive SPOTT mapping tool.
The interactive map draws data from Global Forest Watch Commodities to reveal concession site boundaries of the featured companies, and their scheme smallholders and mill locations (where available). The mapping tool also provides a variety of environmental layers such as the location and description of protected areas, Indonesian primary forest, tree cover loss alerts, and active fires within the last 24 hours to one week.
How to use the mapping tool:
Click and hold on a point on the map and drag the mouse to where you want to view. To zoom in and out, click on the + and – icons in the bottom left of the map.
The control panel or legend to the left of the map contains various data layer options. Tick the boxes on and off to choose which data layers you want to view. For more detailed information on the data sources, click on the adjacent information icons.
Viewing oil palm companies’ plantation concessions:
On the mapping tool, select a company from the drop down list, or type in full the company’s name or that of a specific site in the case sensitive search bar, then press Enter.
Company concession sites are displayed with coloured marker pins when viewed at a regional level. Clicking on a pin will zoom in to display a particular concession site in more detail.
There are four different datasets displaying plantation concessions. The first two refer to SPOTT featured companies:
- Those disclosed by the company itself – displayed in purple with vertical hashing on the map
- Sites registered to the company’s from government mapping data – displayed in orange with horizontal hashing on the map (for Cameroon, Indonesia, Liberia and Republic of Congo only)
- Percentages alongside each layer refer to the relative hectarage disclosed by the company against data from government maps
- If no concessions can be found for a particular company, the control panel will state: Data currently unavailable. Please see Landbank indicator 2.6.1.
The second two refer to other available oil palm concessions, which may not pertain to companies featured on SPOTT, but give a greater view of the spread of oil palm concessions in selected countries:
- Areas certified by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO; for Brazil, Indonesia, Malaysia and Papua New Guinea) – displayed in yellow with diagonal hashing on the map
- Government allocated areas (for Cameroon, Indonesia, Liberia and Republic of Congo) – displayed in yellow on the map.
Click on a concession site on the map and a pop-up box will appear displaying the following information:
- Company ownership
- Site name
- Country in which the plantation is located
- Area of the plantation concession in hectares (ha)
- Link to the company’s page
- Zoom function to view the plantation concession in greater detail
Clicking on company disclosed or RSPO certified concession sites will also display the following information:
- Country in which the plantation is located
- Group that owns the plantation
- Certification Status
- GIS Calculated Area (hectares)
- Certificate ID number
- Certificate Issue Date
- Certificate Expiry Date
- Mill name
- Mill location
- Mill capacity (tons per hour)
- Certified Crude Palm Oil (megatons)
- Certified Palm Kernel (megatons)
- Estate Suppliers
- Estate Area (hectares)
- Outgrower Area (hectares)
- Scheme Smallholder area (hectares)
- Source of data
Other data layers
The following analytical tools form a crucial component of SPOTT mapping tool, supporting greater accountability of best practice on the ground:
Forest Change Layers:
FORMA Tree Cover Loss Alerts
- FORMA is a near real-time tree cover loss alert system which shows areas of tree cover loss up until August 2015. See the GLAD tree cover loss alerts for more recent data.
GLAD Tree Cover Loss Alerts
- This data set, created by the GLAD (Global Land Analysis & Discovery) lab at the University of Maryland and supported by Global Forest Watch, is the first Landsat-based alert system for tree cover loss. It shows tree cover loss from January 2015 to the present, displayed in pink.
- The Fire Information for Resource Management System (FIRMS) delivers global MODIS-derived hotspots and fire locations. The near real-time active fire locations are processed by the NASA Land and Atmosphere Near Real-Time Capability for EOS (LANCE).
- Once ‘Active Fires’ has been selected, a filter will appear below giving the option to view fire hotspots over the past 24 hours, 48 hours, 72 hours and week.
- Tick the ‘Only show high confidence fires’ box to isolate hotspots above 95% confidence.
- Once selected, fire hotspots will be displayed as orange hexagons on the mapping tool.
Protected Areas (WDPA)
- The World Database on Protected Areas (WDPA) displays marine and terrestrial areas that are legally protected according to various designations (e.g., national parks, state reserves, and wildlife reserves) in blue.
BirdLife Endemic Areas
- BirdLife International has mapped restricted-range bird species. The map displays areas where the geographic range of two or more endemic bird species overlap, which appears on the map in green.
- Orangutan habitat has been mapped for Borneo and Sumatra, and appears as orange hashing on the map.
- These three layers show the location of current tiger habitats, areas of habitat expansion, and critical tiger corridors, and appear as pale orange hashing.
Intact Forest Landscapes
- Identifies the world’s last remaining unfragmented forest landscapes, large enough to retain all native biodiversity and showing no signs of human alteration as of the year 2013. This layer also shows the reduction in the extent of Intact Forest Landscapes from 2000 to 2013. It is shown on the map in dark green.
Indonesia primary forest
Please note that primary forest data are currently available only for Indonesia.
- This data set indicates the location of intact and degraded primary forests across Indonesia for the years 2000, 2005, 2010, and 2012.
- The mapping tool will display the data layer selected, using two different datasets to show forest cover:
- Light green displays primary forest which has been degraded
- Dark green displays primary forest which remains intact
Peat Lands (Southeast Asia)
- This layer displays peat land in Indonesia. Different depths are displayed in different shades of brown.
Scheme smallholder sites
Data layers for scheme smallholders are not yet available in this current version of SPOTT.
Click on the different base map layer options to choose from three different base maps (e.g. imagery, topography, or dark grey).