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Franklin Baker First Food Ingredient Producer to Earn RSB Certification

Geneva, July 2016 – Franklin Baker Company of the Philippines earned the Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB) certification for the growing, harvesting and supply of coconut products from farms located in the Mindanao Island, Philippines.

Franklin Baker is the first food ingredient producer to earn RSB certification. Their products include desiccated coconut, sweetened and unsweetened toasted coconut, creamed coconut and coconut concentrate, virgin coconut oil, coconut flour and coconut water.

640314003.fb.logo“RSB certification provides numerous benefits to any manufacturing organisation,” said Jerry Lorenzo, Franklin Baker’s President and CEO. “The strength of RSB for Franklin Baker is that not only does it recognize sustainability and ethical practices, but also covers areas of global concern such as labor rights, rural development, conservation and the environment. Attention to these operating principles is not only a desired way to run a business, but also reinforces our other CSR activities in the local communities and raises our credibility status with increasingly discerning global customers. We are proud to join the elite group of companies that have achieved RSB certification.”

“As a company which has an unwavering commitment to protect the environment that nurtures us, and which relies on the agricultural sector for our very existence, Franklin Baker is particularly gratified to be recognised with this accolade,” said Lorenzo.“Franklin Baker has demonstrated a firm commitment to the concept of sustainable, ethical manufacturing and supply chain practices as a fundamental business philosophy in their day to day operations,” said Rolf Hogan, RSB’s Executive Director. “We are exceptionally proud to have them as the first primary food ingredient producer to earn RSB certification in the world.”

RSB is recognized by NGOs as the “most comprehensive and ambitious” biomaterials sustainability certification program in the world. A global coalition that brings together farmers, companies, non-governmental organizations, experts, governments, and inter-governmental agencies concerned with ensuring the sustainability of biomaterials production and processing, RSB provides a holistic approach towards sustainability assurance, covering social, environmental and operational aspects.“

We knew from the beginning that the structural limitations of our supply chain, based on land laws and land rights in the Philippines, were going to make RSB certification challenging at best and possibly impossible to achieve, said Cesar Galvez, Franklin Baker’s Vice President of Operations. “However, we learned to think and work differently to comply with the standard. The learnings for us were almost too numerous to mention. The RSB certification process helped us to improve relationships with our farmer partners, increase internal awareness and training, and make our internal processes even more robust. RSB certification process took us to another level of operational excellence.”

Franklin Baker’s products and production facilities have also been certified under the USDA and European Organic certification schemes, and are also Fair Trade USA certified.

About RSBRSB (Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials): is an independent and global multistakeholder coalition which works to promote the sustainability of biomaterials. RSB’s user-friendly certification scheme is the strongest and most trusted of its kind. It verifies that biomaterials are ethical, sustainable and credibly-sourced. The certification is approved by RSB’s members, including leading NGOs and UN agencies. RSB members work across sectors to set global best practice for sustainable biomaterial production. Choosing RSB-certified biomaterials helps build trust and credibility in the bio-based sector and supports a healthy bio-based community. www.rsb.org

About Franklin Baker: Franklin Baker, Sr. formally established the desiccated coconut business in 1895 through the purchase of a small coconut business enterprise in Philadelphia, PA. In 1922, the first Philippine desiccated coconut plant was established in Manila by Franklin Baker, Jr. The company was initially known as the Philippine Food Company and later renamed Franklin Baker Company of the Philippines in 1926.Franklin Baker Company of the Philippines, formerly owned by General Foods then Kraft Foods, is now a privately-held company and one of the largest global suppliers of coconut products. Today, their 3 state of the art manufacturing facilities produce a multitude of coconut derived products that are shipped to over 50 countries worldwide, and they are the leading and preferred supplier of desiccated coconut and coconut products to major food manufacturers in the U.S. and every continent in the world.Franklin Baker employs several unique and industry best practices in its manufacturing processes, as well as the use of specialized equipment to help ensure the highest quality and safety of food products. www.franklinbaker.com

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