Kellogg switches to 'greener' palm oil

mongabay.com
March 08, 2011



Kellogg Company will support greener palm oil production through the purchase of 'sustainable' palm oil certificates until it can obtain a segregated, sustainable supply, said the food giant in a statement.

The maker of Frosted Flakes® and PopTarts® will offset all of its palm oil consumption through the purchase of GreenPalm certificates, which represent physical palm oil certified under the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), a body that sets social and environmental criteria for palm oil production.

"Kellogg is committed to conducting our business in a way that reduces our environmental impact," said Celeste Clark, Kellogg's Chief Sustainability Officer. "While palm oil is a very small percentage of our total ingredients, as a socially responsible company, concerns about the sustainable production of palm oil are clearly on our radar screen."


Palm oil is now found in up to half of packaged processed foods in some markets. By virtue of its high yield, palm oil is a cheaper substitute than other vegetable oils. In an effort to reduce costs, some candymakers are using palm oil in place of cocoa butter in their milk chocolate products. Photo by Rhett A. Butler
"We intend to continue this commitment until we are able to purchase a segregated supply of sustainably grown palm oil."

Kellogg accounts for roughly 0.1 percent of the global annual consumption of palm oil, according to the company.

Palm oil

Palm oil is used widely in processed foods, cosmetics, and soaps — WWF estimates that palm oil is found in roughly half of packaged supermarket products. It is also increasingly used as a biofuel.

RSPO was originally formed as a response to pressure from environmentalists who maintain that oil palm production has driven large-scale destruction of rainforests across southeast Asia over the past two decades, triggering the release of billions of tons of carbon dioxide emissions and imperiling rare species, including the Sumatran tiger and the orangutan. RSPO has created a set of criteria to make palm oil production less damaging to the environment. These include using natural pests and composting in place of synthetic pesticides and fertilizers whenever possible, implementing no burn policies, sparing high conservation value forests from development, taking measures to reduce air pollution, and creating catchment ponds to prevent palm oil mill effluent from entering waterways where it would damage aquatic habitats. The hope is that CSPO can be sold at a premium to recoup the increased costs that certification entails.













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CITATION:
mongabay.com (March 08, 2011).

Kellogg switches to 'greener' palm oil.

http://news.mongabay.com/2011/0308-kellogg_palm_oil.html