Malaysian palm oil farmer Reta Lajah is one of only a few in her village to be certified green and ethical, after a yearlong journey to join a global initiative that she hopes will help her navigate a new European Union law to curb deforestation.

Yet, while Reta's farm in Sungai Judah village on Carey Island, about 60 kilometers from Kuala Lumpur, will protect wildlife and forests, aim to resolve any land disputes and use green growing methods, there is no guarantee she will be able to sell to Europe's premium-paying buyers in the future.

Agreed in December and due to take effect within two years, the EU law will force global suppliers of commodities like palm oil, soy and cocoa to prove that their supply chains are not fueling forest destruction.