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Xerox, Danone Drop Asia Pulp & Paper after Greenpeace Pressure

Danone and Xerox are among a list of companies that have pledged to suspend purchases from Asia Pulp & Paper following a Greenpeace exposé on the paper company’s practices.

Last month, Greenpeace released the results of a year-long investigation into APP, the world’s third largest pulp and paper producer, claiming that the company is systematically violating Indonesia’s laws protecting ramin, an internationally protected tree species. Ramin was found on numerous occasions in the logyards of APP’s Indah Kiat Perawang mill, waiting to be pulped, according to Greenpeace.

A number of major global companies including National Geographic, Barnes & Noble and Walmart were implicated as sourcing products from APP that contained rainforest fiber. Eight of the eleven companies named have now confirmed action to remove APP from their supply chains, Greenpeace says.

Danone has decided to suspend all purchases from APP “wherever possible under law,” until the situation has been clarified and confirmed by independent stakeholders. Danone Group’s direct purchases from APP, which account for 1.5 percent of the group’s total cardboard packaging purchases, will be suspended by the end of June 2012.

Xerox has had a global policy in place since 2002 to not use APP products, but following the Greenpeace investigation it emerged that a division of Xerox Europe had been buying and selling APP products as recently as 2011. Xerox says that this practice has now stopped and has confirmed that none of its subsidiaries will purchase any products from APP.

Collins Debden said that it will no longer source raw materials from APP for its Australian and U.K. operations. Collins Debden is part of the Nippecraft group, which is majority-owned by APP.

Meanwhile Mondi, National Geographic, Parragon and Constable & Robinson have either announced new policies to remove APP or have confirmed further due diligence actions to implement existing policies, Greenpeace said.

Walmart China confirmed that it has stopped selling the product Greenpeace highlighted in its report, but has not agreed to stop stocking all APP products. Barnes & Noble and New Zealand retailer Countdown/Progressive have yet to respond to the report, Greenpeace said.

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