The Agropalma group operates in the Amazon region, the largest rainforest in the world, representing almost 60% ofthe country’s total area and considers its preservation essential to the planet. In this context, it believes that the conduction of the processes - which make up its production chain - is directly linked to the people’s performance in the organization within a context of social responsibility and respect for the environment.
Since the late 1990's, the Agropalma Group has been investing in the improvement of its socio-environmental performance, through:
Among several important environmental aspects, the management of water resources deserves special attention. Agropalma is committed to optimize water consumption and keep its quality. Our consumption target since 2011 is 4.5 tons of water per ton of oil produced. As noted below, since 2013, average water consumption has been rising, and in 2016, the target has been exceeded. This situation was caused by the inauguration of the new mill PARAPALMA, which started in mid-2015 and has not reached full processing capacity yet, increasing the water consumption intensity last years.
However, rather than conforming with this new scenario, Agropalma industrial team is facing the challenge of bringing water consumption under the target by 2023, through the adoption of new technologies and management practices, aiming to reduce water consumption of even while the new mill does not reach its full capacity. It is not an easy task, and in 2018 and 2019 our mills consumed 5.7 and 5.6 m3 of water per ton of CPO, respectively.
Regarding palm oil mills effluents (POME), we are committed to make the best economic use of them and minimize risks of watercourses contamination. Therefore, in 2019, as well as since company was founded, we have used 100% of the treated effluents as liquid fertilizers in our plantations, what means we have zero POME discharges in the water bodies. In addition, as recorded in our sustainability reports, we monitor phosphorus and nitrogen levels in eight carefully chosen watercourses. This monitoring aims to verify if our plantations or mills are causing any damage to water quality. In this case, the goal is to meet the legal limits of 3.7 mg/L for nitrogen and 1.0 mg/L for phosphorus. Below, we present the analytical results for 2018 and 2019.
Company also take care the palm oil refinery effluents (PORE). In both our refine units. in Belém and Limeira. 100% of the effluents are pumped to proper treatment stations. where they pass through chemical and biological processes, becoming clean before being released into the rivers.
Also aiming to prevent negative impacts on water bodies. Agropalma prefer manage weeds. pests and diseases by using non-chemical methods. as biological control. traps. mechanical eradication. mechanical slashing. among others. In 2019. the only chemicals used were three herbicides for weeds control. In this year. beyond glyphosate. we also made trials using small amounts Flumioxazin and Metsulfuron-methyl. representing an intensity of 1.03. 0.0064 and 0.0006 liter of active ingredient applied per hectare. respectively.