A primate genocide and ecological catastrophe on an industrial scale is occurring in some of the most valuable, sensitive and diverse ecological habitats on Earth – all thanks to a cheap cooking oil we find in our supermarket products everyday.
Palm oil is a cheap and common ingredient in many foods and household products, but as with everything apparently ‘cheap’ – it comes at a terrible cost. Vast swathes of pristine rainforest are razed to the ground every minute to clear the way for palm oil plantations in countries such a Borneo, Sumatra, Indonesia and Malaysia. The scale and speed of this deforesting operation is staggering.
It tragically appears those people who are managing the palm oil business and the workers carrying out the forest clearing work do not care if they destroy the abundant and endangered wildlife that lives in the forests. In fact deforestation workers are told to dispose of any wildlife that gets in the way – no matter how inhumanely – which includes running over orangutans with logging trucks.
Because of forest clearing for palm oil, in just the last 20 years 90% of orangutan habitat has already been destroyed. It’s a difficult reality to let sink in.
If deforestation continues at this pace, orangutans could be extinct in the wild as early as 2015, and their jungle habitat could be completely gone in 20 years from now.
If this information makes you angry it should – but there is something we can do to help stop this disaster. It’s as easy as stop buying products with palm oil as an ingredient, and help reduce the insane demand for this massively unsustainable product.
Palm oil is found in loads of everyday products – from breadsticks to anti-dandruff shampoos (you know the one) – so please check the label every time you buy, especially if the products come from the big ‘discount’ supermarkets where supplier corners are cut. Palm oil is not even healthy food for you – it’s bad for the heart.
You could also help greatly by writing to companies and stores who source or sell palm oil and indicate you will boycott their products unless they pledge to eliminate palm oil from their source chain and products.