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Palm Oil or Not?

Posted Oct 17 2008 6:02pm 1 Comment

Recently I've come across quite a few product lines either claiming to be 'palm-oil' free, or using it as a 'miracle' ingredient, or using 'sustainable' palm-oil. So what's all the fuss?

Palm oil is a versatile vegetable oil present in 1 in 10 supermarket products, and hence is the most significant cause of rainforest loss in Malaysia and Indonesia. According to
Friends of the Earth, Palm oil plantations destroybiodiversityand are associated with human rights violations and worker exploitation. And you have probably already heard about avoiding hydrogenated palm oil in your food, while Red Palm Oil is extremely beneficial for your health. So once again, I'm back to my mantra, read the ingredients.

Aside from reading the ingredient list of any product, some likeLush'snew Greenwash soap, are telling you outright that they don't use palm oil. Others like The Body Shop are using palm oil that is produced sustainably. A new skincare line Harmattan, by New York based company Krismark, is completely based on palm oil. There are plenty of skincare lines out there that do not use any palm oil. Hemp oil, is one of the most sustainable natural oils and very good for the skin,Innocent Oilsoffer it in all their products. Argan Oil, from Morrocco, is another fabulous sustainable oil for your skin (and for eating) and can be found online atWildwood Groves.
Photo courtesy of Friends of the Earth website.
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Palm oil must be the most unjustifably maligned edible oil.  In my view, this is the work of environmental groups Friends of the Earth at the behest or under the direction of anti-palm oil competitors.

You are right that red palm oil is extremely beneficial for our health and according to the Palm Oil Truth Foundation, it is an incredible  rich source of anti-oxidants.  I should know.  I tried it and my doctor was so amazed at how my blood pressure had improved that he encouraged me to continue doing whatever I was doing.

If you read www.deforestationwatch.org, you'd find that the claims of significant loss of rainforest loss in Malaysia and Indonesia are but a tissue of lies, especially in Malaysia. 

My wife and I joined a tour to Malaysia which included a our of rubber estates and palm oil plantations and we learnt that palm oil is the most sustainable of all oilseed crops on account of its extremely high productivity (up to 10 times that of its nearest competitors), which means that palm oil requires much less land than its competitors. Everywhere we went, we were greeted by greenery.

The ultra-competitiveness of palm oil could very well be the real reason for all the anti-palm oil nonsense!

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