EUDR Special Edition: Newsletter - April 2024

EUDR Special Edition: Newsletter - April 2024

This month, our focus is on the EUDR and how could help you prepare for compliance. We touch on EUDR implementation, address common EUDR plot data problems, and explain's EUDR Prep Service, which currently helps companies prepare for this complex but doable new challenge. Feature Highlight Webinar: Mill List Upload (Recap)

Leo in Feature Highlight Webinar on Mill List Upload

Did you happen to catch this month’s Feature Highlight Webinar on Mill List Upload? If you missed it, you can still watch it here on-demand along with the rest of our Webinars. Our CEO and Founder, Leo Bottrill, explained how provides Risk Insight reports that give a detailed overview of the risks associated with the supply chain, including deforestation statistics and grievances.

The webinar also showed how the Mill List Upload feature allows users to securely input additional information such as volume totals and direct suppliers for their mills. It can help users integrate data into their workflow and gives a summary of all mills, as well as the ability to trace plots that likely supply the mills. This helps address current traceability gaps and fragmented grievance data.

We also offer features like supplier screening and preparation for the European Union Deforestation Regulation (EUDR). Be sure to stay tuned for our next webinar on more things EUDR in!

Join our EUDR Team - We are hiring!

The team in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Would you like to join our Jakarta team? We have two new data jobs to help us to expand and strengthen our palm oil deforestation and traceability database ( We are looking for two exceptional candidates who want to work with our growing purpose-driven team. Experience is always great, but we don’t mind if you are still getting started in your career. We care more about your drive to learn new skills and work effectively both with your colleagues and on your own.

Job 1 - Data Specialist (Jakarta-based)

We are looking for a Data Specialist who will be responsible for supporting the development of supply chain data for This includes collecting and updating company ownership information, grievances, and news stories. You will update existing datasets, incorporate new datasets, and review public records for supply chain information. Additionally, the Specialist will coordinate with the Senior Data Analyst to upload and digitize plot maps and add relevant data. Knowledge of palm oil supply chains is helpful. Strong research abilities and willingness to learn new tools are also required. Learn more here.

Job 2 - Junior Data Analyst (Jakarta-based)

We are looking for a Data Analyst who will assist the forest analytics team in generating reports on deforestation and conversion cases. The role involves analyzing forest alerts, interpreting satellite imagery, mapping deforestation, and producing reports for clients. A background in remote sensing and GIS tools for mapping forests and land use change, with knowledge of palm oil supply chains as a bonus. Experience in the palm oil industry or research organizations is a plus, along with familiarity in mapping oil palm estates, forests, and deforestation.
Learn more here.

Will the EUDR be delayed?

Recent op-ed in Mongabay by Etelle Higonnet

There is growing concern that the EUDR will be delayed. Various reasons are given such as smallholders will be excluded, the law is protectionist and unfair to developing countries, and traceability is too complicated. Our take, however, is that a delay to enforcement is unlikely.

First, the regulation is already law and remains widely supported in Europe. Second, the EU has taken on board some of the concerns, such as delaying the risk classification for countries and allocating more resources to support smallholders. Third, commodity-driven deforestation remains high in both the tropics and boreal forests. A delay would likely be politically damaging and the alternative - a patchwork of voluntary standards and weakly enforced forest country regulations - looks increasingly unpalatable for major downstream buyers.

Understanding the EUDR

We are adding a new monthly section to the newsletter where we explain a core concept of the EUDR each month. We hope this section can help clear up common questions and misunderstandings about the EUDR and its implementation. If you have any suggestions for this section, please drop us a line.

What is NOT deforestation-free according to the EUDR?

Example of JRC 2020 forest map, reviewed with a 30cm base map, and industrially cleared

There are 3 steps required to confirm that a plot is not deforestation-free. Unless all three are met, the plot remains compliant, but the risks should still be tracked and used to complete Article 11 risk mitigation.

First, it is important to know what areas were forest at the cutoff date of December 31, 2020. In addition to the canopy threshold requirements, you need to consider young regrowing forest areas, and exclude existing plantations and planted forests.

The EUDR defines forest as
land spanning more than 0,5 hectares with trees higher than 5 meters and a canopy cover of more than 10%, or trees able to reach those thresholds in situ, excluding land that is predominantly under agricultural or urban land use

Second, you need to detect when the forest areas are cleared, and monitor for the EU’s definition of deforestation, which includes conversion to an agricultural use.

The EUDR defines deforestation as
“the conversion of forest to agricultural use, whether human-induced or not”

Third, you need to determine if the area has been converted to the relevant commodity and will enter the supply chain.

The EUDR defines deforestation-free (for non-wood products) as
the relevant products contain, have been fed with or have been made using, relevant commodities that were produced on land that has not been subject to deforestation after 31 December, 2020

Challenges of EUDR Plot Data

Example of a plot as a multi-polygon

To check plots for EUDR we need polygon plot boundaries. A polygon may be as simple as a rectangle with 4 coordinates, one for each corner. However, GIS data is often much more complicated. It is possible to group polygons together into what is called a multi-polygon. If your land is made up of many different disconnected portions, or additions were made over time, the data may be stored in this format.

We most commonly see this when the data provided is a map of the planted area extent. When roads and other land uses are removed, the plantation turns into a series of smaller areas. It is also sometimes used to include multiple estates operated by a single company, even if they are 50-100 km apart.

Though sometimes data is in multi-polygon format due to data errors, the most common being self-intersecting polygons - a rectangle but twisted in the middle to look like a bow-tie. Some strict GIS systems prohibit this type of data, but unfortunately the most common systems do not. These twists happen due to human error, a corner is very slightly dragged out of place creating a small overlap. They are also caused by data processing algorithms.

Example of an intersection error in a multipolygon

In our opinion, multi-polygons should be split and tracked as individual polygon areas for the EUDR deforestation check. This is because we do not know which of the reasons above applies, and we want to avoid any confusion about the gaps between the areas. We are building additional tools to automatically correct as many of these cases as possible in the next version of Plot Check. That does mean that you may upload what you think is 10 plots, and get 50 results in Plot Check, because we’ve automatically split a multi-polygon. We will also need to automatically delete small errors we think are errors (due to self-intersecting twists in the data).

In general, we recommend that you clean your plot database as much as possible, so that you can manually review these cases and not rely on our system’s automated choices. If you need help making a plot database, consider joining our EUDR Prep Service. EUDR Prep Service EUDR Prep Service EUDR Prep Service seeks to assist companies in preparing for EUDR compliance's deforestation monitoring requirements by helping with checklist creation, traceability data preparation, risk assessment, and early access to a non-compliant database. We provide training courses and individual risk assessment services to ensure preparation for EUDR enforcement in 2025. provides everything you need to prepare for EUDR compliance's deforestation monitoring standards.