Do you know how many of the products you use every day contain palm oil? Some estimate that it is in about half of all packaged products sold in the supermarket, like your shampoo, ice cream, and detergent. It is the most widely consumed vegetable oil on the planet because it’s extremely versatile and cheap to grow.
So why does that matter?
Palm oil grows in the same area as tropical rainforests, and the uncontrolled clearing of land for conventional oil palm plantations has led to widespread loss of these irreplaceable forests. The cultivation of palm oil has been linked to deforestation and the burning of peat lands in Indonesia and Malaysia, and blamed for the smoke haze that recently choked Singapore.
Palm oil plantations have also been connected to the destruction of habitat of endangered species such as orangutans, rhinos, elephants and tigers as well as the displacement of indigenous peoples who have lost their land and livelihoods.
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