We all know about Palm Oil and we see it added everywhere. BUT don’t be fooled! Just because it is widely available, the oil has been under criticism for quite a long time now, but not many are aware of its true danger for the environment let alone our health!
Where does Palm Oil come from?
Most of the Palm Oil which is produced globally comes from southeast Asia with about 80-85% coming from Malaysia and Indonesia. These countries and their wildlife are facing serious problems.
Let’s look at environmental damage!
The palm oil industry needs more crops due to the demanding increasing needs. Deforestation of the beautiful rain forests has taken on a threatening future. Every hour areas being as big as 350 football fields are cut down and replaced with pine monoculture (Monocultures, the agricultural practice of producing or growing genetically similar, or essentially identical plants), which release enormous amounts of greenhouse gases that destroy the homes and habitat of countless varieties of animal species with damage that is not reversible. Isn’t that a horrible thought? So what will our future look like and that of our children and children’s children? What world are we leaving behind for the people we love?
By the year 2022 we will not find animal species native to the countries of deforestation as a result of the (greedy!) palm oil industry if this is going to continue!
Let’s look at the effects on animals closer!
In South East Asia well over 300,000 animal species of all sorts live in the rain forest. Can you imagine how many are hurt, injured or even killed due to the effects of deforestation. Many lose their homes and do not know where to go, from orangutans to elephants. Did you know that do to the consequences of the palm oil industry that more than 55,000 orang-utans have lost their lives? The damage is done. The animals suffer! They die a horrendous death suffering. Wounded or killed by machetes. Run over by big machines and if not killed, they are buried alive! And then there are the poachers seeing it all as an opportunity to go further into the rainforest to kill animals for whatever money they can make with them be it dead or alive! The damage is irreversible!
Let’s look at it from a social point of view!
The palm oil industry supports child labour. Children don’t go to school, instead they are forced to help. Climb trees, carry fruit under hot, boiling temperatures for the many countless unpaid hours. You cannot even imagine. Human rights violation on palm oil plantations. Exploited by large corporations who take land from the indigenous just to grow their profits! Shame on them! We mus
Inform yourself. Read labels (and NOT just once. Labels can change!). CHECK skin care, shampoo, soap, margarines, chips, sweets, cans etc. You will find Palm Oil in more foods (and non-foods) than you can ever imagine as it is one of the cheapest oils to produce.
We all know that we need oils in our diet. Fats are essential for human (and animal!) health. BUT NOT oils like Palm-oil.
PALM OIL dangers!
- palm oil contains high levels of saturated fats which turn into trans fats which are a significant threat to cardiovascular health heart problems, high risk of stroke and other chronic diseases
- trans fats cause growing concern of the risk of type 2 diabetes
- there are concerning links between the consumption of trans-fats and prostate cancer
- diets high in palm oil can lead to excessive weight gain
- ….the list is endless…..
And remember, there is no law that trans fats have to be mentioned on any food labels in the UK. So for an example companies like
- Warburtons (bread maker)
- Unilever (maker of Flora margarine, Knorr soups, Pot noodles, Dove Soap are the BIGGEST users of palm oil)
- Premier foods (makers of Cadbury cakes, Hovis bread, Bisto gravy, Mr Kipling cakes)
- Nestle (from Quality Street to Aero to Kit Kat, Nestle etc)
- Kelloggs (small quantities, but the oil is present in a variety of their products)
So CHECK your labels. Not just once or twice, check them every time as you never know if the ingredients have been changed. And don’t be fooled by the words “sustainable sources”. There is NO such source!!