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How Can You Help Save The Rainforest? Support Sustainable Palm Oil

How Can You Help Save The Rainforest? Support Sustainable Palm Oil

23rd September 2014
(c) A-Z-Animals

Palm oil and it's derivatives are the product of the oil palm tree which is cultivated extensively all around the world particularly in Malaysia and Indonesia. Today it is found in roughly half of all of the products on supermarket shelves with this industry having single-handedly contributed to the fastest rates of deforestation in south-east Asia over the past few decades.

The problem with palm oil is obvious on the surface: ancient, biodiverse rainforest is cleared meaning that the wildlife in these conservation sensitive areas has no food or shelter and therefore disappears, with the extinction of numerous iconic species such as orang-utans becoming a horrendously realistic prospect within the next decade.

(c) A-Z-Animals

However, it is hard to know what we can do thousands of miles away from the situation to help to put an end to the devastation, with the most popular theory being to completely boycott palm oil and any products that do indeed contain it. This in itself presents an enormous hurdle as palm oil (or fat) is rarely listed as such in product ingredients lists as it is instead masked as vegetable oil or fat in the food industry (or as numerous other things in cosmetics).

So, even if the labelling issue was resolved would a complete boycott of palm oil be possible? Well yes it would but what many people fail to realise is that although it may be possible, it is actually quite irresponsible. If for some magical reason the production of palm oil ceased to continue then the problem would simply move to other oil types such as soy or coconut oil, which require almost identical growing climates as the oil palm.

(c) A-Z-Animals

If you want to help to protect the rainforests and the animals that inhabit them then the best thing to do is to actively support the use of sustainable palm oil in products as this oil has been grown and produced in a way that is regulated and has less harmful environmental impacts than the majority of the palm oil that is on the market today. It is important to remember that if sustainable palm oil does not have the support, then it will stop being produced completely taking the situation right back to square one.

For more information about palm oil, the products that it is found in and the environmental impact that is has then please visit the A-Z Animals Palm Oil Campaign.

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