Assessment of Smallholders’ Barriers to Adopt Sustainable Practices: Case Study on Oil Palm (Elaeis Guineensis) Smallholders’ Certification in North Sumatra, Indonesia
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The significant increase in oil palm areas has led to concerns about the sustainability of the associated farming practices. To address these issues, the Roundtable Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) organization formulated principles and criteria (P&C) for sustainable practices for members of the oil palm industry. Initially, only big companies applied for RSPO’s certificate of sustainable product. However, with the growing proportion of smallholders, they are strongly suggested to get involved. Currently, only a few smallholders have obtained the certificate. One possible reason is that the RSPO P&C might be too complicated for smallholders. Using a descriptive and correlation method, this study found that lack of information, cost of adoption and incompability with the stage of farm development, social values and farming conditions, inadequate managerial skills, and profitability explain the barriers for smallholders to adopt the RSPO’s P&C. These barriers need to be addressed in order to improve the adoption of sustainable practices among oil palm smallholders.