For I was honored to be invited as one of the speakers at SPC Advance 2016, an annual conference on the latest trends and issues in sustainable packaging for the members of the Sustainable Packaging Coalition, including global brands such as Unilever, Mattel, Coca Cola, Walmart and Disney.
In Portland, as at the IUCN World Conservation Congress in Hawaii, industry is talking about landscape conservation. In fact, this is one of the major themes of the conference and many sustainability practitioners from SPC member-attendees were keen to know how Indonesia is doing with its landscape conservation efforts.
Needless to say, I was happy to share that APP’s point of view on conservation has always hinged on a landscape approach. From the beginning, APP has always advocated that real change to forest conservation can only be achieved when companies, including APP, manage conservation concerns not only in their own plantations and facilities, but more so beyond their own concessions.
A key element of my presentation was on the Belantara Foundation which was established to secure and manage funding for wide-ranging landscape scale conservation projects in Indonesia. The Belantara Foundation answers one of the major concerns at the conference - the need to come up with innovative public-private collaboration to address serious sustainability challenges in Asia, which understandably does not have the means to finance large-scale and long-term sustainability projects.
Around the world, brands are aligning in their understanding and support for landscape conservation. The interest in this topic from Portland to Hawaii is not a coincidence. Brands are recognizing that true conservation requires a more holistic, multi-stakeholder approach to achieve real results not only for biodiversity, but also for local economies, agriculture, and community development.