research the products you use
Consumer pressure is instrumental in making companies think about their practices and change what they do. You as an individual can have a huge influence on changing bad practice. If you want to be part of the movement to put pressure on these companies to either use segregated or Identity preserved Certified Sustainable Palm OIl or remove palm oil from their products then the below information is a great tool to help you with this…
read ingredients on label – click here for the alternate names for palm oil if you see any ingredients on your product label go to step 3
go to the company website and have a read of their mission statements or environmental policy or about section or company philosophy. You are looking to see if you can see a statement on palm oil, not just a general eco or green statement but a specific mention of palm oil use or non use. If no mention then the ingredient will probably be derived from palm oil unless otherwise specified but you can explore further, go to step 3
email the manufacturer/company and ask if they use any ingredients which are derived from palm oil.
i) If they reply with no they don’t use palm oil derived ingredients go to step 4.
ii) If they reply with yes they use palm oil but from sustainable sources or that they only source their palm oil from members of the RSPO then go to step 5. iii) If they do not reply send your email once a week until they do. BE THE MOSQUITO IN THE ROOM!
iv) If they keep ignoring you and you have the ability to call them, then phone your enquirey through
v) If they do not reply and you cant call them stop using their product and find a palm oil free alternative or choose a company that can verify they use segregated or Identity preserved Certified Sustainable Palm OIl and/or have signed a NO DEFORESTATION POLICY with TFT or the POIG Charter
List the ingredients you would like the derivations of, be concise & polite, don’t suggest to them what other derivatives are possible just get them to give you the answers. If they reply with ;
i) “we are unable to give you that information”, then stop using their product and find a palm oil free alternative or choose a company that can verify they use segregated or Identity preserved Certified Sustainable Palm OIl and/or have signed a NO DEFORESTATION POLICY with TFT or the POIG Charter
ii) the specific alternate derivative sources and they ARE non palm or are definitely Certified then reply with a ‘congratulations’ for creating a product which does not contain palm oil derived ingredients or for using CERTIFIED Palm Oil derivatives and suggest to them that it would be beneficial to them to make a statement on their website and/or name the derivation in brackets after each ingredient if using an alternate source.
iii) they have found out they do use palm oil but only from sustainable sources or that they only source their palm oil from members of the RSPO then go to step 5.
iv) if they reply with they use un sustainable palm oil then reply with “ thank you for that information but I will no longer be buying any of your products until you source your palm oil from 100% CSPO producers.”
Step 5 : Reply & ask them to specify how much of the palm oil they source is Certified Sustainable Palm Oil, then ask whether that comprises Greenpalm, Mass Balance or Segregated at all or if it is Segregated or Identity Preserved. If they reply with ;
i) we only use a small amount of palm oil or palm oil derived ingredients.” then reply with “many companies say they have minimal usage of palm oil derived ingredients, but combine all the companies together who do use a ‘small %’ of palm oil derived ingredients and you begin to see the problem for the rainforests of Indonesia & Malaysia so can you please specify how many tons you use per annum?”
i) if they reply with “we only use 100% Certified Sustainable Palm Oil” then maybe ask them “why is their product not displaying the official RSPO certification logo? There are very few members of the RSPO who are 100% CSPO so I would have thought that it would only be beneficial for you to use the RSPO logo. Can you please tell us which CSPO supplier you source your palm oil from?”
ii) if they reply with “we intend to source 100% segregated CSPO by 2016” then say “that is a good goal but what prevents you from shifting to it sooner and when was that decision made?”(you find a few companies having made this goal years ago but no closer to achieving it))
iii) if they reply with “we purchase GreenPalm which ensures our Palm Oil is certified” then please reply with “This is not the case, there are different supply chains of Palm Oil. Segregated ( IP / CSPO). Mass Balance (a mix of CSPO with unsustainable). Book and Claim (eg: GreenPalm). We ask you to understand GreenPalm by referring you to this link to explain what it means as it does not mean environmentally friendly http://goo.gl/HVUZg What date do you intend to source IP/CSPO by?
Step 6 : Once you have gone as far as you can possibly go then please cut & paste your email conversation trail to us via firstname.lastname@example.org so that we have the exact words from the company and we will try to investigate further. Thank you for wanting to help with investigating products and companies which contain palm oil.