FSC accepts a Policy for Association case against Alas Kusuma

Indonesian Forests
January 16, 2024

The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) has accepted the Policy for Association complaint Mighty Earth submitted against two organizations belonging to the Alas Kusuma group in Indonesia. The allegations made by Mighty Earth include conversion of natural forests into plantations, destruction of high conservation value areas (including peatlands), violation of human and traditional rights, and illegal logging or the trade in illegal wood or forest products.

These allegations constitute a violation of FSC’s Policy for Association, which lists six destructive activities that are unacceptable to FSC. The two organizations who have allegedly engaged in these unacceptable activities are PT Mayawana Persada and PT Kusuma Alam Sari, both belonging to the Alas Kusuma group.

The Alas Kusuma group is associated with FSC through three FSC-certified organizations belonging to its corporate group. Even though the alleged activities occurred in non FSC-certified areas, the Policy for Association enables FSC to process a case within the corporate group of the associated organization based on the provisions of the procedure Processing FSC Policy for Association Complaints (FSC-PRO-01-009).

According to the evidence Mighty Earth shared in the complaint to support the allegations made against Alas Kusuma, the alleged unacceptable activities started in 2016, and continued to take place in 2023. Hence, FSC will be processing this case according to the provisions of FSC Policy for Association version 3 (FSC-POL-01-004 V3-0), which became effective on 1 January 2023. This will be the first case to be processed under the revised version of the Policy for Association.

The alleged conversion of natural forests and destruction of high conservation values by PT Mayawana Persada and PT Kusuma Alam Sari took place in their concessions located in West Kalimantan, Indonesia. Due to this alleged conversion, high conservation values – including orangutan habitats and carbon-rich peatlands – within these concessions may have been harmed.

After receiving Mighty Earth’s complaint, FSC reviewed this information and decided to start a Policy for Association case. According to FSC’s procedure on Processing Policy for Association Complaints, the next step in this process is to explore whether alternative dispute resolution measures, further investigations or a direct decision may be pursued.