Palm Oil

The oil palm tree is native to West Africa. It is an important tree for forest-dependent communities, their cultures and their economies. However, large-scale oil palm monocultures for industrial production (oil and agrofuels) have been driving deforestation and land grabbing in Southeast Asia. More recently, oil palm monocultures are also driving destruction in Africa and Latin America.

Many oil palm plantations’ concessions in West and Central Africa were built on lands stolen from communities during colonial occupations. This is the case in the DRC, where food company Unilever began its palm oil empire. Today, these plantations are still sites of on-going poverty and violence. It is time to end the colonial model of concessions and return the land to its original owners.

(Only available in French) Polices et militaires tirent à balles réelles sur des ouvriers de la Société FERONIA/PHC en grève à la plantation de Boteka.

A young man was killed and other people are still in prison. It was after a protest against the failure of the PHC company to provide local communities with any benefits after 100 years of illegally occupying their land.

Communities in West and Central Africa are facing the impacts of industrial oil palm plantations. With the false promise of bringing ‘development’, corporations, backed up with government support, have been granted millions of hectares of land for this expansion.

RIAO-RDC and international NGOs calls for the immediate release of community leaders and villagers from the communities of Mwingi, Bolesa and Yanongo who were arrested after a peaceful protest against the palm oil company PHC. An urgent action alert is open to sign-ons.

The report details abuses faced by communities affected by industrial oil palm plantations managed by the Congolese company Plantations et Huileries du Congo (PHC).

The video “NO to violence against women and girls living in and around oil palm plantations” denounces the violence against women in West and Central Africa whose lands have been invaded by industrial oil palm plantations.

European development banks have financed a plantation company in DRC that is built on injustice and violence dating back to a colonial-era land grab. When the company went bankrupt in 2020, the banks chose to uphold the plantation model.

More than 100 years ago, lands were stolen from communities in DR Congo for industrial oil palm production. Since 2009, those lands are under control of the company FERONIA.