Frozen food chain Iceland has announced it is banning the use of palm oil in its own brand products by the end of this year, after warning that it drives the destruction of rainforests. The firm has already removed palm oil from 50 per cent of its ranges , with the rest being changed by the end of 2018. It will be removing the oil from 130 food lines - reducing demand by more than 500 tonnes per year, with palm oil replaced with alternatives such as sunflower oil and butter. Iceland managing director Richard Walker said the company does not believe there was sustainable palm oil on the mass market and so is removing it all together. He told the BBC : “Until Iceland can guarantee palm oil is not causing rainforest destruction, we are simply saying ‘no to palm oil’. “Certified sustainable palm oil does not currently limit deforestation and it does not currently limit the growth of palm oil plantations. So until such a time as there is genuinely sustainable … [Read more...] about What is palm oil and why Iceland is axing it from its own-brand range
Products which contain palm oil
Nutella, the beloved chocolate hazelnut spread, is as popular as ever – as proved by the riots over discounted jars which took place across France last week. But a diagram shared online showing the ingredients of Nutella may make you think twice about the treat – especially if you have concerns about controversial palm oil, sometimes listed as vegetable oil in the ingredients. Aside from the astonishing amount of sugar it takes to create each jar, the next most prevalent ingredient is palm oil, ahead of hazelnuts, cocoa and skimmed milk powder. Additional ingredients listed on the Nutella website are lechithin and vanilla flavouring. Although palm oil is rich in antioxidants, it contains high amounts of saturated fats, which can cause heart disease. Aside from that, products containing palm oil are boycotted by some people for ethical reasons. Back in 2015, former French environment minister Ségolène Royal urged the public to stop eating Nutella because of its … [Read more...] about Why is palm oil bad? Revealing image shows how much of the unethical ingredient is in Nutella
Whether it's soup, chocolate, lipstick, soap or washing powder - all contain palm oil. But their product descriptions simply mention "vegetable fat" or "vegetable oil." Also included in that umbrella definition: Olive oil, rape seed oil and linseed oil, all of which are healthy vegetable oils and important sources of energy. Our brain, nervous system and metabolism need vegetable fat or oil, as they contain fatty acids that our body can't produce by itself. But most consumers are unaware that the generic "vegetable oil" label can also refer to palm oil, a product from the fruit pulp of oil palms. Being healthy isn't enough Very often, new palm oil plantations result in the clearing of rainforest. Researchers at Princeton University have shown that more than half of the palm oil plantations in Indonesia and Malaysia are located in areas where there used to be rainforest. So by choosing a specific product, the consumer unwittingly has an impact on deforestation of rainforest and the … [Read more...] about New EU label calls palm oil what it is
Project goal: Production of sustainable palm oilProject implementation: Natural Habitat, a small company based in the Netherlands, collaborates with local smallholder farmers in Sierra Leone, who have been producing organic palm oil for decades. They don’t use chemical fertilizers or pesticides - instead they rely on traditional farming methods. Around 1,400 farmers collaborate with the companyProject partners: Nedoil (Sierra Leone), Natural Habitats (the Netherlands) Cookies, ice cream, margarine - almost every processed product in the supermarket contains palm oil, and global consumption is growing fast. It's big business for international corporations - many of which are looking to Sierra Leone, where some local clan chiefs are eager to sell land to investors and crop producers. As a result, many smallholder farmers are losing access to their land. But there are counterexamples as well: farmers who grow palm oil sustainably, without chemicals; and there are … [Read more...] about Is there a good side to palm oil?
In the beginning, I have to admit, my approach to the subject was naive. "Clearly, palm oil is something I've heard of before," I said, "it's a product of the oil palm tree. Perhaps it is similar to coconut fat, maybe olive oil, it's most likely used for cooking." And I assumed that I would learn a lot about this fat relatively quickly. Boy, I was wrong. Avoiding it would be quite a challenge. And that was exactly my task. A few days later I had read a few articles, scanned websites of environmental organizations, and watched YouTube videos on the subject and was quite surprised by what I had found. What had I gotten into? The stuff was everywhere. In food. Not only in Nutella, but also in pretzels, soup, chocolate, biscuits, muesli or margarine. Cosmetics were also full of it. And because palm oil is often used in animal feed, every sausage I would buy was probably, at least indirectly, a palm oil product. And what about gasoline? I had assumed that it contained mainly rape oil, but … [Read more...] about #HowGreenAmI: Is a life without palm oil possible?