Iceland to remove palm oil from all own label food
NamNews - Apr 11th, 09:08
Iceland has announced that it will stop using palm oil as an ingredient in all its own label food by the end of 2018 – making it the first major UK supermarket to make such a pledge.
The chain highlighted that growing demand for palm oil for use in food products, cosmetics and biodiesel is devastating tropical rainforests across South East Asia. It said that palm oil is currently found in 50% of all supermarket products, from bread to biscuits and breakfast cereal to soap.
Iceland has already removed palm oil from 50% of its own label range with 130 products reformulated by the end of the year. It has been worked with suppliers to replace palm oil with substitutes such as rapeseed and vegetable oils.
Iceland has also brought out 100 new lines without palm oil this year, including its new summer range, and by the start of 2019, it will have launched over 200 new lines that do not contain palm oil.
Iceland said it had made an “ethical decision” to remove palm oil in order to demonstrate to the food industry that it is possible to reduce the demand for palm oil whilst seeking solutions that do not destroy the world’s rainforest.
Iceland’s Managing Director, Richard Walker, commented: “Until Iceland can guarantee palm oil is not causing rainforest destruction, we are simply saying ‘no to palm oil’. We don’t believe there is such a thing as guaranteed ‘sustainable’ palm oil available in the mass market, so we are giving consumers a choice to say no to palm for the first time.”
He added: “Having recently been to Indonesia and seen the environmental devastation caused by expanding palm oil production first hand, I feel passionate about the importance of raising awareness of this issue – and I know many British consumers share my concern and want to have a real choice about what they buy. This journey has shown me that, currently, no major supermarket or food manufacturer can substantiate any claim that the palm oil they use is truly sustainable, as the damage being caused to the global environment and communities in South East Asia is just too extensive.”NamNews
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