The World Wildlife Fund revealed this week that food companies and supermarkets have improved how they source palm oil for use in palm oil products significantly since 2009. The improvement however isn’t fast enough to prevent further environmental damage. On Tuesday the WWF published a Palm Oil Buyers’ Scorecard which rated 132 companies, most of which were from Europe. 29 of these received full marks with 15 of them being from the UK, including major companies such as Waitros, Cadbury and Boots.
The WWF has said although palm oil is used in a vast range of foods and toiletries, many palm oil products keep it hidden and label it as “vegetable oil/fat” on the ingredients. With a vast array of different palm oil products such as ice cream, bread, soap and shampoo – it’s important consumers realise which products contain palm oil and purchase them knowing this palm oil has been sourced sustainably.
Palm Oil expert Adam Harrison of WWF UK stated “Although there has been some progress on sustainable palm oil, new commitments are simply not translating fast enough into increased use of certified sustainable palm oil.”
What’s worrying is that in the major palm oil producing regions of Indonesia and Malaysia it’s said that almost one third of their entire forest loss in the past 10 years has been from palm oil production. The consumption of palm oil however is actually growing. With a current usage of 50 million tonnes a year the WWF have predicted that this number will increase to 77 million by only 2050 with that number possible to increase if palm oil’s demand as a biofuel also increases.
It’s extremely important that we continue to raise awareness and support sustainable palm oil for use in palm oil products worldwide. If you’d like to find out more about the various palm oil products or palm oil in general visit – http://www.greenpalm.org