What is Palm Oil?
- Palm fruits grow on the African palm oil tree Elaeis guineensis.
- Palm oil is a highly versatile vegetable oil.
- A highly efficient crop: The African palm oil tree, has a very high yield, meaning that more oil is produced for the area of land used to farm it, when compared to all other vegetable oils. This is good in terms of overall land use for vegetable oil crops and also makes palm oil very cheap.
Why should we be cautious about the source of the Palm Oil we use?
- Many palm oil plantations have been developed on land that was previously primary rainforests, using methods to clear the land that not only destroy the forest, but all the animals living within it.
- Fires were set to clear the land for many plantations, resulting in loss of habitats, species and pollution of surrounding areas from the smoke.
- There are additional concerns about the illegal use of community land in some countries, and further environmental impact with farming practices.
What we are doing at Twycross Zoo
- As part of our policy on palm oil, we do annual audits of all products used across site, to ensure that all products we use comply with the Certified Sustainable Palm Oil requirements.
- We operate a system to ensure new suppliers are checked and no product will be ordered unless it contains only sustainably sourced palm oil, if any at all.
“Sustainable palm oil production is comprised of legal, economically viable, environmentally appropriate and socially beneficial management and operations.” – Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), 2017
What can you do?
- Check the foods, detergents and other household products that you buy. Look for the logo, Certified Sustainable Palm Oil.
- If it is not clear that the palm oil used was from a sustainable plantation, you can contact the company to ask for their position on palm oil and to find out if they use sustainable palm oil.