Do commodity certification systems uphold indigenous peoples’ rights? Lessons from the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil and Forest Stewardship Council

Do commodity certification systems uphold indigenous peoples’ rights? Lessons from the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil and Forest Stewardship Council

A new study by Forest Peoples Programme, published in Policy Matters, explores the challenges that certification systems face upholding indigenous peoples’ rights.

Such certification systems were purposefully set up to get around deficiencies in national laws and weak governance by encouraging alternative voluntary production systems that are more socially and environmentally responsible. Although the standards adopted are reasonably consistent with international human rights law, in practice the schemes have not upheld such values, and compromised national legal frameworks in fact influence outcomes.

While legal reforms are needed to really enforce rights, in the meantime certification systems could do more by being stricter about compliance, upholding complaints and requiring genuinely independent audits.

Please click on the link below to read Policy Matters, Issue 21 (September 2016)

Certification and Biodiversity – How voluntary certification standards impact biodiversity and human livelihoods

(Links to offsite PDF)