In Australia, palm oil can be found in around 50% of packaged supermarket products, yet the moral & environmental implications of palm oil are devastating.
Palm oil is one of the primary causes for deforestation, as vast areas of forest are cleared daily to make way for palm oil plantations. The production of palm oil pushes species to extinction, results in human rights abuses and has severe impacts on the environment.
It’s estimated that 98% of Indonesian forest will be gone in 9 years due to palm oil plantations. Tropical rainforests can absorb nearly a third of all CO2 emissions, hence their destruction has a devastating effect of climate change.
Here are some tips to cut palm oil from your life
Eat wholefoods. Boycott packaged food as much as humanly possible. Once upon a time, people would be able to see every ingredient in their meals – vegetables, meat, nuts etc. Fast food and the pre-packaged food has led us down a dark path where many of us consume all sorts of unhealthy, unethical, barely edible products on a daily basis. The simplest thing to do is eat real food.
Choose products that contain clearly labelled oils , such as 100-percent sunflower oil, corn oil, olive oil, coconut oil or canola oil. Palm oil is often disguised as ‘vegetable oil’.
Avoid ingredients with the word palm in it including palmitate, palmitoyl, or simply palm. These will all contain palm oil.
Google it – if you’re unsure of whether a product contains palm oil Google the product followed by the words ‘palm oil’ and often you can find the answer in a few clicks.
Check the saturated fat percentage. If more than 40% of a products fat content is of the saturated variety, it most likely contains palm oil.
The single greatest threat facing orangutans today is habitat loss. Between 2000 and 2010, the average annual rate of forest loss in Indonesia was around 498,000 hectares (equivalent of over 55 rugby fields) per hour.
Find out more about the devastating effects of palm oil here.