Partnership will plant over 1 million trees under the scope of Project RELeaf
Petaling Jaya, 15 December 2021 - Ramping up reforestation efforts to plant three million trees in Malaysia by 2023 via Project RELeaf, Nestlé Malaysia inked a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the world’s largest producer of certified sustainable palm oil, Sime Darby Plantation (SDP). Under the MOA, over 1 million trees are set to be planted across 1,200 hectares of riparian zones and steep slope areas within SDP’s oil palm operation areas.
Launched in 2020 by Nestlé Malaysia, Project RELeaf aims to restore riparian and forest ecosystems across the Kinabatangan Wetlands and Merisuli Forest Restoration Areas in Sabah, as well as in forest reserves along the Central Forest Spine in Peninsular Malaysia. This is also part of Nestlé’s global efforts to fight climate change and reduce the Company’s carbon footprint.
Through the MOA with SDP, Nestlé will be producing and supplying over 1 million seedlings and conducting planting activities at the sites. Planting sites will be located at selected SDP estates in both Peninsular Malaysia as well as the East Malaysia regions of Sabah and Sarawak.
Mr. Juan Aranols, Chief Executive Officer of Nestlé (Malaysia) Berhad, said, “Safeguarding the environment is a key priority for Nestlé. This is why we have initiatives in place to help preserve and conserve the country’s natural biodiversity and these include our reforestation efforts such as Project RELeaf, aiming to plant three million trees by 2023. Now, we are pleased to partner with SDP, who is also the main supplier of Nestlé Malaysia’s certified sustainable palm oil. By working together, we can help to reduce total emissions along our value chain while preserving natural ecosystems.”
“This partnership will also contribute to our global pledge to achieve zero net greenhouse gas emissions by 2050,” he added.
Mr. Mohamad Helmy Othman Basha, Group Managing Director, of Sime Darby Plantation, said that the Company is very pleased to be working again with a like-minded partner to realise its commitments of protecting and conserving biodiversity as well as contributing to combat climate change.
"Restoring forests and planting trees on a large scale are important nature-based solutions to increase carbon sinks, as part of our response to climate change. Over the last 12 years, we have planted over 1.5 million trees through various tree-planting projects, including our involvement in a previous project with Nestlé. Sime Darby Plantation is truly excited to renew our collaboration with Nestlé today with RELeaf,” said Mohamad Helmy.
“Over the next five years, we plan to double the number of trees we have planted through our tree-planting projects. And whilst we are on track to achieving our target of 40% reduction in carbon intensity by 2030, the success of our tree planting projects will be fundamental in how we lay the groundwork towards making and realising a Net Zero commitment,” added Mohamad Helmy.
All conservation and biodiversity activities that take place under Nestlé Malaysia’s RELeaf Project will be in accordance with the RSPO Management and Rehabilitation of Riparian Reserve Guideline 2018.
Project RELeaf builds on the pioneering Kinabatangan Rileaf Project, which concluded in 2020 and saw one million trees planted in Sabah. Under Project RELeaf, 3 million trees are targeted to be planted by 2023.