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How clean is our palm oil?

UK businesses get top marks on palm oil, in our 2011 Palm Oil Buyers’ Scorecard

In 2009 when we released our Palm Oil Buyers' Scorecard it showed that a handful of UK companies were doing well but that most were simply failing to buy sustainable palm oil.

Two years later the Scorecard now covers businesses across Europe and we find UK businesses dominating the top of the table. Most of the companies assessed in both 2009 and 2011 have taken some strides forward, showing how the use of sustainable palm oil is slowly becoming more mainstream. 87 of the 132 companies surveyed have committed to sourcing 100% RSPO-certified palm oil by 2015 or earlier, an encouraging sign that could spur further market development.

However, nearly half of the retailers and more than a fifth of manufacturers scored very poorly on taking responsibility for the impacts of their palm oil sourcing.

“The leading companies in the Scorecard demonstrate that it is possible to source certified sustainable palm oil to cover most or all of their palm oil usage, so there are no excuses for all companies not to take action now,” says Adam Harrison, WWF palm oil expert. “But 2015 is just around the corner - all companies, even some of the top performers, need to move faster. Only then can we ensure that the momentum gained by the RSPO is not lost and avoid the negative impacts that irresponsible oil palm plantations have on forests, wildlife and communities.”

Q: What links your shampoo and ice-cream to the orang-utan?
A: Palm oil

What is palm oil? Where is it grown? Why should we care? Our quick and easy palm oil slideshow has the answers:

Palm oil seedlings.

From our palm oil specialist:


Palm Oil Buyers’ Scorecard 2011

What happened last time?

2009 Palm Oil Buyers’ Scorecard results