When doing the initial research for our synthetic alternative to palm oil components, we quickly came across lots of information regarding the current palm oil industry. It soon became apparent that the economies of some countries, for example Indonesia and Malaysia, depend almost entirely upon the current methods of palm oil production. Therefore we compiled a detailed impact analysis report for synthetic palm oil, which can be found by clicking on the button to the right.

Is Palm Oil Really That Big A Deal?

Palm oil is used in hundreds of products. It is likely that you have either consumed or used a product today containing palm oil or its constituents, but we, as consumers, rarely think about it or where it comes from. The truth behind its current method of production is devastating.

  • An area of rainforest the size of 300 football fields is chopped down every hour in Indonesia and Malaysia to make room for oil palm plantations[1]

  • This mass deforestation is resulting in a massive decline in many critically endangered organisms, such as the Sumatran orangutan[2]

  • Rare flora, much of which is yet to have been researched and is found only within these rainforests, is being destroyed and lost forever[3]

  • People live in the rainforests that are being bulldozed, their homes completely eradicated because of the palm oil industry[4]

  • Rainforests act as a colossal carbon sink and are often growing atop peatlands - uprooting or burning these trees releases a huge amount of CO2 into the atmosphere (resulting in deforestation related to the palm oil industry accounting for more global warming than every vehicle on earth combined)[5]

So yes, the problems arising as a direct result of the palm oil industry are a big deal.

[1] Rainforest Rescue. Facts about palm oil and rainforests
[2] Associated Press in Jakarta (2012) ‘Rare Sumatran orangutans dying as fires rage in Indonesian swamp forest’ The Guardian. March 28th
[3] Indonesian Rainforest Foundation. Rainforest Medicinal Plants
[4] Rainforest Rescue (2011). Indonesia: Victims of the palm oil industry
[5] UCS USA (2012). Palm Oil and Tropical Deforestation
[6] Photo © Wakx