Verification using satellite monitoring technology | Bunge Loders Croklaan

Verification using satellite monitoring technology


We use satellite images of the areas where we have concession data and other supply chain related information – peat lands, forest reserves, mills – to detect if there is any deforestation taking place.

Every two weeks, the most recent images are compared to the previous versions. This means any change in how land is used can be detected at an early stage. In 2018 and 2019, we actively monitored the entirety of Peninsular Malaysia and Sabah using satellites. We have continued expanding this area to the current 27 million hectares. The full area is monitored for land-use change, regardless of its relation to palm oil. 

1. Mapping and monitoring

To map our palm supply base at concession level, we, alongside several of our key suppliers (processors and refiners) collaborate with Aidenvironment. They also provide a supplier screening service at group level.

We have mapped our supply base up to 8 Million hectares in our in-house ArcGIS system. The area that is both mapped and monitored is 5 Million hectares.

2. Attention to special areas

The added layers to the map are examples of areas that require special attention:

  • Peat lands are visualized in orange
  • Protected areas are visualized in green

3. Pro-active on alerts

When the bi-weekly satellite image comparison takes place, we receive land use change alerts from Satelligence. To determine if the land use change falls within concessions, peatlands or protected forests, we use spatial analysis tools in ArcGIS (a geographic information system). The alerts are automatically uploaded to ArcGIS to check if deforestation is occurring within our mapped supply base.

Our partner Satelligence provides eyes on the ground

Our partner Satelligence specializes in providing highly detailed, semi-automated satellite-based insights and actionable results over large areas.They have world class expertise on scalable processing of radar and optical satellite images to assess patterns and trends in forests, agriculture and water. Visit the Satelligence website if you want to know more about their technology.