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Boycott Palm oil until we have answers!

Boycott Palm oil until we have answers!

I have now, had nearly all the replies in from the Manufacturer’s and Supermarkets of the UK who are known to use palm oil in their products and are in the top 100 for sales. I have to say, the news is not very positive and most of them have omitted to answer the questions I posed, particularly in providing me with a list of their products containing palm oil and whether it is sustainable or unsustainable.  There is a supply of sustainable palm oil out there and it is not being used, so there is no excuse!

List of products containing palm oil

Until they provide me with a list, as a consumer, I will refuse to use ANY of their products, where possible and instead use products from Companies that do not use palm oil at all. At the end of the day, I do not want to be consuming this unhealthy saturated fat anyway and lessen my chance of a heart attack.

Listing Palm oil as ‘Vegetable oil’

The law regarding ingredients listings, is an EU law, and allows manufacturer’s to list palm oil within the general term ‘vegetable oil’. OK, there is not enough pressure on the European Union to change that right now (although I am campaigning to get it changed as us consumers should be allowed to choose what we consume, and avoid palm oil if we wish – see my letter here http://www.notjustanessexgirl.com/2009/05/my-letter-to-department-for-business-enterprise-regulatory-reform ) but they could volunteer to do it. Waitrose and the Co-op now list palm oil specifically in all their own brand products, and Sainsbury’s are following suit, so why cant Tesco’s, Asda, Morrisons and all the others? Answer is, they could if they wanted to, but they simply do not want to – too much cost involved! As a consumer, I do not want to be munching on palm oil (a saturated fat) and I feel cheated that I have been eating it for so long in my breads, chocolate, biscuits, Wrigley’s chewing gum and loads more – I feel sick that we are not allowed to have the choice to see what has palm oil in it, because the law says we do not have to be given that choice. For now, if something says ‘vegetable oil’ in it’s ingredients, I am avoiding it. Admittedly, this is very difficult as so much contains it, but with some effort, I realise that my desire for biscuits is indirectly killing orangutan’s, so with that in mind, it is much easier to avoid!

RSPO – is it just a cover?

The RSPO appears to be doing good work, but I do feel that some of the members are just hiding behind their membership and saying that they are ‘doing their bit’ when they are actually, as a Company, doing very little. This does not mean everyone, but some of them, so do not take their membership as being the be all and end all – it is not. Ask them what exactly ‘they are doing themselves’ Any timescales for a changeover to sustainable palm oil and efforts to help the environmental issues. Do not let them all just say they are a member and leave it at that.

It’s all about time

Time is actually running out for the Orangutan’s and many other animals, such as the Sumatran Tiger. If deforestation for the planting of unsustainable palm oil plantations is not stopped, then the Orangutan will be extinct within around 10 years!

You will see that many Manufacturer’s, Supermarkets, and the RSPO itself do not have strict time scales that they commit to, to make the required changes (change to sustainable palm oil). This is no good – we want some promises and action before the Orangutan is extinct! We need them to tell us WHEN they are going to do something.

So, I shall be writing back to most of the Supermarkets and Manufacturer’s who have now replied, and asking them for the more specific answers laid out above this time. I will keep you posted!

Greed

It is essentially all about greed……..

1. Our consumer greed for tasty and cheap products.  (do we really need to eat biscuits and long life bread anyway?)

2. The Manufacturer’s greed for selling in bulk, their budget products, using palm oil as a cheap bulking agent.

3. The Palm oil Companies greed for selling quickly grown, cheaply produced, lucrative oil to sell.

Although we are in a time of credit crunch, we can all make an effort to some degree – next time you go shopping, keep in mind all the products containing it, and try to avoid them.

See what else I have been doing to save the Orangutan here

Click here to see the letters I sent to the Government, Manufacturer’s and Supermarkets

Click here to see the top 100 products and which contain palm oil

Click here to see the replies from those Supermarkets and Manufacturers about their palm oil useage

Click here to see information about palm oil dangers – scroll through

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