If You Care About Animals and the Earth, Here's Why You Need to Boycott Palm Oil Immediately

This oil is primarily found within baked goods, milk, potato chips, chocolate. 

Palm oil is literally in many packaged foods that are on shelves for purchase. The oil is also used in many toiletries and cosmetics, to help increase creaminess in many products from detergent to soap, shampoo and toothpaste. The oil is also utilized as a biofuel. 

Its also in high demand in Indonesia and Myanmar, as a replacement for peanut and coconut oil, and palm oil tops the list as a widely used vegetable oil in the world passing the demand for soy. People don’t even know how harmful the crop is to animals, the environment and rainforests, and it just keeps becoming worse.

A massive industry of environmental devastation

Palm oil is only able to grow in a tropical environment that needs a lot of water. The oil palms originate from West Africa and South America. Man-made plantations have popped up in Kenya, Papua New Guinea and southeast Asia. It is a big industry in Indonesia, where it takes up 11% of export earnings, making it the 3rd largest export in the country. Palm oil may be a profitable product, but our environment suffers from it the most. 

Palm oil plantations threaten the vast areas of tropical rainforest, and it is putting Indonesia and Malaysia at risk. Orangutans are endangered and live in those two countries that are being affected by palm oil. Studies from the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and Princeton University, have found that palm oil plantations are the root cause of the destruction in the world’s rain forests.

The 60% increased in palm oil production is mostly at the expense of our tropical rainforests. The plantations do more than destroying our environments health, they also harm the orangutan population. It also creates conflict with local communities over land rights and this isn’t a pretty scenario.

Orangutan Foundation International highlights the consequences of palm oil production: “In Sumatra at least 10.8 million hectares have been opened up for palm oil plantations. The situation in Borneo is similar."

"Large scale conversion of tropical rain forests has had an absolutely devastating impact on biodiversity in both Borneo and Sumatra. In addition, deforestation may cause soil erosion and, because most forests have been cleared through the use of fire, massive air pollution from smoke."

"Much of the land on which palm oil plantations have been established consists of peat swamp forest. The draining, burning, and conversion of peat swamp forests to palm oil has been especially damaging to the world’s climate as it has led to Indonesia being the third largest contributor of carbon to the world’s atmosphere after China and the United States.”

Instead of clearing degraded areas, palm oil companies would much rather clear primary forests to make plantations because the land can be cleared by fire, which will fertilize the soil and save the company money.

Any timer cut can be sold for money. When a plantation is built, orangutans are brutally killed as they try to find food in the plantations. Some animals were found buried alive, and killed by guns and machetes. Orangutans are known as ‘agricultural pests.’ Over 2 decades, it has been estimated that 50,000 orangutans have been killed from palm oil plantations. 

Sumatran Tiger, Sumatran Rhinoceros, Sun Bear, Pygmy Elephant, Clouded Leopard and Proboscis Monkey populations have suffered as well from the construction of palm oil plantations on their natural habitats.

“According to the World Wildlife Fund, an area the equivalent size of 300 football fields of rainforest is cleared each hour to make way for palm oil production. This large-scale deforestation is pushing many species to extinction, and findings show that if nothing changes species like the orangutan could become extinct in the wild within the next 5-10 years, and Sumatran tigers less than 3 years.” 

Sustainable palm oil: fact or fiction?

In the last few years, red palm oil in many health food stores are marketed as a healthy cooking oil. Take a closer look at the label and it will say the oil is sustainably harvested and has no impact on orangutans and their habitat. Don't fall for it. A good question to ask is, Are these products actually safe for the environment, local communities and animal habitats?

In 2004, the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) set out voluntary guidelines to taking less destructive methods of palm oil production — including ways to protect land rights of local people. Many activists claim these guidelines are just “greenwashing” the issue, because forests are continuously destroyed, wildlife killed and local people jailed after lawful protesting of the unlawful grabbing of their land.

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If You Care About Animals and the Earth, Here's Why You Need to Boycott Palm Oil Immediately  If You Care About Animals and the Earth, Here's Why You Need to Boycott Palm Oil Immediately Reviewed by Jamm Real on 19:59:00 Rating: 5
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