31.07.2019. For the third year in a row, INTERHOLCO leads SPOTT’s assessment of timber companies with consistent engagement for the climate, people and wildlife.
Transparency to monitor progress on climate mitigation and zero deforestation
Interholco’s higher transparency score of 94.7% stems from realising the vital role the Congo Basin plays, for Africa and the world.
With alarm for climate change, biodiversity loss and CO2 emissions growing on a global scale, SPOTT assessed 97 forestry companies whose activities could directly threaten carbon and biodiversity-rich tropical forests, which are home to many endangered species.
Along with Interholco, only 6 companies carry out a climate change-related risk analysis. Within 20 companies with zero-deforestation pledges, just 10 along with Interholco require all their wood suppliers to uphold their zero-deforestation commitment ensuring a deforestation-free supply chain and only 12, including Interholco, have fit-for-purpose reporting systems to monitor deforestation.
How to read SPOTT’s assessment of Interholco’s transparency?
As highlighted at the SPOTT’s Transparency Forum, held in Brazzaville (Republic of Congo) on 7 March 2019, Interholco listens to concerns and expectations – not just of government representatives or authorities checking legality, but of all parties involved.
To fully take into account environmental, social and economic factors, including governance and legality, Interholco consistently engages with the local and indigenous communities, international NGOs, research scientists, the press as well as customers.
Creating economic value from a forest area of over 800'000 hectares, Interholco manages to keep 300'000 hectares more under protection. This has multiple benefits. If the forest is sufficiently attractive as a source of income for the Republic of Congo, then the forest will be maintained – no need to destroy the home of thousands of gorillas and elephants to make room for agricultural land or grazing land for livestock. 16'000 local and indigenous people benefit from more than 1'000 jobs, rights and infrastructure (schools, medical centre, library, clean water, electricity). With 27% of the forest under protection, only a considerably reduced number of trees are harvested - sustainably. This results in lower CO2 emissions, which is recognised as a climate change mitigation measure.
A free ESG benchmark consulted by 18'000 users
In 2018, over 18’000 users visited the SPOTT website and viewed pages more than 134’000 times. The SPOTT Dashboard, a free portal on the website (registration required), allows users to download SPOTT assessment data and additional analyses.
In 2019, SPOTT added new indicators dedicated to legality, including eight indicators based on the legal documents companies have uploaded to the Open Timber Portal – for companies operating in the Republic of Congo, Cameroon, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
Through its annual assessment, SPOTT allows users to identify areas in which a company excels or progresses, and where it should be more transparent or adopt best practice. SPOTT's primary target audiences are financial institutions (investors, asset managers, banks, research institutes) and buyers who are interested in the companies’ Environmental, Social and Governance practices.
To see Interholco’s 2019 ESG performance as assessed by SPOTT, click here
To see how SPOTT assessed all 97 timber companies, click here
Led by the Zoological Society of London (ZSL), an international charity whose mission is to achieve the worldwide protection of animals and their habitats, SPOTT stands for Sustainability Policy Transparency Toolkit. For the third year in a row since 2017, SPOTT assessed tropical forestry companies against more than 100 sector-specific indicators to benchmark their progress over time.
Since 1962, INTERHOLCO is serving an international clientele with high-quality hardwood – Made in Africa.
With annual sales of about EUR 70 Mio., the Swiss-based INTERHOLCO is one of the leading international suppliers of sustainable hardwood, from sourcing and processing to high quality hardwood products: logs, lumber, laminated scantlings and more. In addition to three processing sawmills, large kiln facilities, a lamination and planing mill, INTERHOLCO manages an FSC-certified 1.1 million ha forest concession in the Republic of Congo (Brazzaville), employing a diverse dedicated global workforce of about 1’000 people. INTERHOLCO serves over 50 countries world-wide, from importers to industrial end-users.
INTERHOLCO is committed to making sustainably harvested timber from Africa the norm, as a renewable material that improves people’s livelihoods in the region and protects the forest and its precious wildlife. INTERHOLCO supports the Fair&Precious initiative in its goal to increase market recognition of sustainable hardwood from Africa based on technical, environmental and sustainability considerations.
Communications contact INTERHOLCO
Tullia Baldassarri Höger von Högersthal
INTERHOLCO AG, Schutzengelstr. 36, 6340 Baar, Switzerland
Tel.: +41 (0)41 767 03 82