Palm oil is a widely used oil around the world. It is used for both food and non-food products. However, palm oil production has lots of issues and concerns regarding its impact on our environment and its sustainability.
Palm Oil is a very versatile and widely used oil around the world. You can use it for cooking and it is also found in most ready-to-eat foods in your supermarket. Not just that, this oil is also used in many non-food products such as detergents, soaps, deodorants, shampoo, toothpaste, cosmetics and to produce biodiesel fuel.
Palm oil can also help protect our brain function, reduce the risk of getting heart diseases, and to some, it helps increase their vitamin A level.
However, despite all the benefits palm oil brings, issues and concerns regarding its sustainability and impact on our environment are being raised.
And if you’re eco-conscious like me, you might find this issue a bit conflicting with your green lifestyle.
With that, Project Greenify has prepared this mini-blog to enlighten you about Palm Oil.
Organic Coconut Oil
Sustainable Palm Oil Alternative
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What is Palm Oil?
Palm oil, scientifically known as Elaeis guineensis, comes from the fruit of oil palm trees which are commonly found in Africa.
In recent years, oil palm tree plantation expanded to Southeast Asia, including Malaysia and Indonesia — which currently produce more than 80% of the world’s palm oil supply.
Palm oil is used for both food and non-food products, as mentioned earlier, and has been consumed for thousands of years. As palm oil consumption keeps on increasing, its sustainability and environmental issues also increased.
Why is Palm Oil So Bad?
To catch up with the increasing demand for palm oil, oil palm plantations needed to expand. And to make room for the growing plantation, tropical forests are being destroyed.
Destroying tropical forests and peatlands also means destroying the natural habitat of most animals. And since burning is the most common method of clearing forests, this also causes air pollution.
Palm oil production also brings soil pollution and erosion and water contamination due to intensive cultivation.
Reports also state that some palm oil corporations violate human rights by paying low wages and destroying forests without permission.
RSPO-certified Eco-friendly Palm Oil
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What Can Be Used Instead of Palm Oil?
Palm oil is known to be a very efficient crop. You can produce more palm oil per land area than other similar vegetable oil crops. And finding a replacement for palm oil will only shift the issues.
Instead of finding alternatives, the Roundtable of Sustainable Palm Oil or RSPO has set standards for palm oil productions to ensure its sustainability and address environmental issues.
So, if you’re going to buy palm oil products, make sure that it is RSPO certified.