Procter & Gamble complicit in exposé on logging companies’ boreal forest destruction

Wednesday April 07, 2021

NRDC report reveals how powerful companies source wood from suppliers degrading Canada’s forests

CINCINNATI, OHIO — A new report released today by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) reveals how powerful companies like Procter & Gamble are complicit in the destruction of the boreal forest of Canada due to the poor sourcing practices of the company’s main pulp suppliers, Domtar and Resolute Forest Products. 

The exposé, titled “By a Thousand Cuts”, provides evidence that large-scale logging by these companies in the boreal forest in the provinces of Ontario and Quebec is not sustainable, despite claims from the companies operating there and U.S. corporations like P&G that purchase wood and pulp from the boreal.

These findings are especially damning for the world’s largest consumer goods company Procter & Gamble, which less than a month ago released an ESG portal upholding its commitment to forest certification systems and its relationship with these companies as one of the ways the company would address the supply chain concerns raised by shareholders at its annual meeting in October 2020.

“NRDC’s new report reveals that two out of three companies most responsible for damaging this critical region of the boreal forest are suppliers to P&G. Unfortunately, P&G relies on forest certification systems to address its impacts on primary forests and threatened species habitat in its supply chains. However, ‘certified logging’ isn’t the action that is needed. What’s really needed is for P&G to establish ‘no-go’ zones where it won’t source pulp from, and to end its complicity in the continued destruction of this climate-critical forest,” said Tyson Miller, Forest Campaigns Director at Stand.earth.

WHY THE BOREAL MATTERS

The boreal forest of Canada is the largest intact forest remaining on the planet, and it also stores more carbon per hectare than nearly any other forest type on Earth (second only to mangroves), making it vital to mitigating the worst impacts of climate change. Often called the “Amazon of the North”, this climate-critical ecosystem is home to over 600 Indigenous communities, as well as boreal caribou, pine marten, and billions of songbirds. The loss of this intact forest is impacting Indigenous peoples’ ways of life and driving the decline of boreal caribou (reindeer) and other species.

ABOUT THE ISSUE WITH TISSUE CAMPAIGN

P&G’s recent announcement comes more than two years after the launch of the Issue with Tissue campaign against Procter & Gamble for making toilet paper and tissue products from endangered forests and threatened species habitat.  

Over the past two years, advocacy groups have released an Issue with Tissue scorecard and an Issue with Tissue 2.0 flunking Charmin and other P&G brands on sustainability, created a “blind wipe” video spoofing Charmin over its softness claims, held a protest outside Procter & Gamble’s shareholder meeting featuring a chainsaw-wielding bear, got Santa arrested for delivering coal to Procter & Gamble’s headquarters, delivered a tongue-in-cheek Earth Day message about folding vs. wadding toilet paper, released a poll showing 85% of Americans want toilet paper makers to use more environmentally responsible materials, supported religious leaders in Cincinnati in sending a letter to Procter & Gamble about the moral imperative of addressing climate change, and held a pirate radio protest in Cincinnati calling out P&G's greenwashing.

###

Media contact: Virginia Cleaveland, Communications Manager, media@stand.earth, +1 510 858 9902 (Pacific Time)