Japanese food manufacturing giant Nissin Foods Group is aiming to achieve 100% sustainable palm oil use by 2031, the company announced in its Sustainability Report 2020.

The company, which created and manufactures instant noodles such as its flagship Cup Noodles product, had an overall procurement ratio of palm oil certified by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) of 20% as of March 2020.

“The Group will procure sustainable palm oil that takes into consideration deforestation prevention, biodiversity preservation, and the human rights of plantation workers,” the company wrote in its report.

In addition, Nissin said it aimed to procure only palm oil that was assessed to be sustainable under its own standards by 2031.

As part of its drive to increase the use of sustainable palm oil in its products, this year Nissin started using RSPO-certified palm oil at all plants manufacturing its Cup Noodles product in Japan.

Environmental organisation, Rainforest Action Network (RAN), welcomed Nissin’s palm oil policy revision.

“Nissin Food’s has taken a step in the right direction. What matters now for communities and forests on the frontlines of palm oil expansion is that the company immediately puts its policy into action,” RAN’s Japan representative Dr Toyo Kawakami said in a statement.

RAN appealed to Nissin to go further and develop and publish a ‘binding, time-bound implementation plan that details the actions it will take to ensure its products are free of Conflict Palm Oil immediately, not in 2030.’

“A new system is needed to monitor and independently verity its suppliers’ adherence to its policy, as its current approach of sourcing so-called sustainable RSPO ‘Mass Balance’ palm oil – a mix of certified and untraceable controversial palm oil – is not addressing its connection to deforestation or human rights violations and the RSPO’s assurance systems cannot yet be trusted,” the RAN statement said.