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FEDIOL PEFCR for vegetable oils and proteinmeal products


15 Jun 2022


Agriculture & Food

Executive summary

In the course of 2021, FEDIOL commissioned VITO, Belgian research organization in the area of cleantech and sustainable development to create product environmental footprint (PEF) profiles of vegetable oil and protein meal products. The products covered include crude and refined oils and meals from soybeans, rapeseeds, sunflower seeds, maize germs and crude and refined oils derived from oil palm (including palm kernel) and coconut, and the refining by-products of the oils of all mentioned crops.

The life cycles covered include the acquisition of raw materials, the processing of these and the transport of the processed products to the customer. The acquisition of raw materials covered both cultivation as well as transport. The sixteen environmental impacts listed in the European Commission’s PEF methodology are assessed together with biodiversity.

Next to these environmental footprint profiles, VITO also made category rules for the mentioned products (PEFCR) and an Excel tool allowing FEDIOL member companies to fill in data of their own crushing and/or refining process so as to be able to assess the environmental impact and hotspots of the life cycles of their own products and to compare the environmental footprint of these with the sector’s average.

This study completed by VITO in 2022 builds on an ISO compatible life cycle assessment (LCA) of EU rapeseed and soybean crushing and rapeseed oil, soybean oil and palm oil refining carried out in 2013 by the Technical University Berlin for FEDIOL. That study established sector average data on the use of raw materials, other materials, water and energy needed to produce one ton of refined oil (Life Cycle Inventory dataset) and assessed the key potential environmental impacts associated with these. Product category rules (PCR) on respectively crude oil refining and oilseed processing were published. These however are outdated by now.

In the meantime, the European Union developed the product environmental footprint (PEF). Furthermore, according to the EU Green Deal, this method could sooner or later be used to help consumers making informed decision on the environmental impact of the products they purchase. This is already translating on the market in new customer requests. FEDIOL member companies are requested


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