HSBC drops shares in palm oil producer
Greenpeace protests score another success
After receiving nearly 10,000 emails (and seeing some excellent spoof adverts), HSBC has sold its shares in Sinar Mas, one of the worst companies responsible for ripping up the Indonesian rainforest for palm oil and pulp plantations.
This development comes hot on the heels of Nestlé's decision to remove Sinar Mas from its supply chain and the news this week (prompted by Greenpeace's new report into Sinar Mas' paper operations) that Tesco will also stop selling own-brand products using Sinar Mas paper by the end of this year.
Greenpeace have been talking to HSBC executives for some time about their holdings in Sinar Mas and it's clear that without thousands of people emailing the CEO Michael Geoghegan they wouldn't have made dumping the Sinar Mas shares a priority.
So far this year, Unilever and Kraft announced they would suspend Sinar Mas contracts for palm oil. After a massive campaign, Nestlé followed suit and has adopted an anti-deforestation policy for their business. And now HSBC has dropped its Sinar Mas shares.
Greenpeace will be asking other Sinar Mas investors, like USB and Credit Suisse, to follow HSBC's lead and divest their interests in the company.