Christmas adverts have always been a part of the season, every year out doing the next and certain brands and retailers, really going all out. Coca Cola, Toys R Us and John Lewis are perhaps the most famous for their amazing and magical adverts. The Christmas period is perhaps the most important time for all retailers to promote their products and get publicity to entice the 21st century consumer, to go and BUY.
In the past few years though, the messages seem to have changed, or rather, the messages are moving more towards a more sincere message …. well, if they are allowed to.
we wish you an environmentally friendly Christmas….
When I was a kid, I remember seeing the Coca Cola advert, finally feeling Christmassy, and all the anticipation and excitement that came with it. The Toys R Us adverts, sparking feelings of wanting and needing items I’ve seen, when in reality, all I ever needed was all around me.
Why is it that the meaning of Christmas has changed from, being with the ones you love and enjoying the season together, remembering core values and being kind to everyone and everything, to how much money you can spend and “how many presents did you get”.
Ok, ok, I enjoy buying gifts for people as much as the next person, don’t get me wrong, and I have nothing against people buying presents for the people they love and care about. I am not slating the large retailers and companies, advertising their wares for the average joe to purchase. But when one large company decides against the regular Christmas advert and opts for an advert that will make us think and maybe be a little more mindful of the products that we are buying, it is banned ?
If you don’t know by now what I am talking about, I am, obviously, talking about the Iceland advert about Rang tan and Palm oil.
Rang-tan and the human….
This advert, if you haven’t seen it yet, is sad. I can understand why the advert may not be suitable for the Christmas period, but on the flip side of that, perhaps Christmas is just the perfect time for an advert like that.
The anticipation and the publicity of the Christmas adverts are always eagerly anticipated, because they give you the Christmas feeling you had when you were a child, but when the advert goes against everything we think it should be, maybe we would sit up and pay attention more, because of the feelings it incurs during this period of consuming.
Unfortunately, Palm oil is literally everywhere – in our foods, cosmetics, cleaning products and fuels. It’s a source of huge profits for multinational corporations, while at the same time destroying the livelihoods of small holders. Displacement of indigenous people’s, deforestation and loss of biodiversity are all consequences of our palm oil consumption. How could it come to this? And what can we do in everyday life to protect people and nature?
Palm oil is the most commonly produced vegetable oil at 66 million tons annually. Its low, world market price and properties that lend themselves to processed foods, have led the food industry to use it in half of all supermarket products. Surprisingly,(or unsurprisingly) Palm oil can be found in frozen pizzas, biscuits and margarine, as well as body creams, soaps, makeup, candles and detergents.
Few people realize that almost half of the palm oil imported into the EU is used as biofuel. Since 2009, the mandatory blending of biofuels into motor vehicle fuels has been a major cause of deforestation.
Oil palm plantations currently cover more than 27 million hectares of the Earth’s surface. Forests and human settlements have been destroyed and replaced by “green deserts” containing virtually no biodiversity.
The warm, humid climate of the tropics offers perfect growth conditions for oil palms. Day after day, huge tracts of rainforest in Southeast Asia, Latin America and Africa are being bulldozed or torched to make room for more plantations, releasing vast amounts of carbon into the atmosphere. Indonesia has more threatened and endangered species than any other country on earth – largely because their habitats have been destroyed, in many cases to expand palm oil plantations.
Bornean orangutan numbers more than halved between 1999 and 2015 with the loss of approximately 150,000 individuals – we lose 25 orangutans every day.Palm oil is not only bad for the climate: As their forest habitat is cleared, endangered species such as the orangutan, Borneo elephant and Sumatran tiger are being pushed closer to extinction. Smallholder and indigenous people who have inhabited and protected the forest for generations are often brutally driven from their land. In Indonesia, more than 700 land conflicts are related to the palm oil industry. Human rights violations are everyday occurrences, even on supposedly “sustainable” and “organic” plantations.
What can you do to help?
Please click on this link above to sign the petition, every signature counts.
Only 70,000 orangutans still roam the forests of Southeast Asia, yet the EU’s biofuels policy is pushes them to the brink of extinction. Every new plantation on Borneo is destroying a further piece of their habitat. Stepping up the pressure on policymakers is a must if we want to save our tree-dwelling kin. Apart from that, however, there is still a lot we can do in day-to-day life.
Follow these simple tips to recognize, avoid and combat palm oil:
- Enjoy a home-cooked meal: Use your imagination: why not try almond-coconut-pear biscuits? Or pizza with potato and rosemary? A meal cooked from fresh ingredients beats processed foods containing palm oil every time. Oils such as sunflower, olive, rapeseed or flaxseed are ideal for cooking and baking.
- Read labels: As of December 2014, labeling regulations in the EU require food products to clearly indicate that they contain palm oil. The cosmetics and cleaning products still use a wide range of chemical names to hide the use of palm oil. A quick check of your favorite search engine will turn up palm oil-free alternatives, however.
- Remember that the customer is king: Ask your retailers for palm oil-free products. Write product manufacturers and ask them why they aren’t using domestic oils. Companies can be quite sensitive to issues that give their products a bad name, so inquiring with sales staff and contacting manufacturers can make a real difference. Public pressure and increased awareness of the problem have already prompted some producers to stop using palm oil.
- Sign petitions and write your elected representatives: Online campaigns put pressure on policymakers responsible for biofuels and palm oil imports. Have you already signed all of Rainforest Rescue’s petitions?
I for one will definitely be checking the labels, and looking for this logo on products, and boycotting the pal oil industry until we have sustainable palm oil replacements.
The RSPO are a not-for-profit that unites stakeholders from the 7 sectors of the palm oil industry: oil palm producers, processors or traders, consumer goods manufacturers, retailers, banks/investors, and environmental and social non-governmental organisations (NGOs), to develop and implement global standards for sustainable palm oil.
The RSPO has developed a set of environmental and social criteria which companies must comply with in order to produce Certified Sustainable Palm Oil (CSPO). When they are properly applied, these criteria can help to minimize the negative impact of palm oil cultivation on the environment and communities in palm oil-producing regions.
The RSPO has more than 3,000 members worldwide who represent all links along the palm oil supply chain. They have committed to produce, source and/or use sustainable palm oil certified by the RSPO.
I have found a partial list of chemical names given to palm oil in products:
- PKO – Palm Kernel Oil
- PKO fractionations: Palm Kernel Stearin (PKs); Palm Kernel Olein (PKOo)
- PHPKO – Partially hydrogenated Palm Oil
- FP(K)O – Fractionated Palm Oil
- OPKO – Organic Palm Kernel Oil
- Palmitate – Vitamin A or Asorbyl Palmitate (NOTE: Vitamin A Palmitate is a very common ingredient in breakfast cereals and we have confirmed 100% of the samples we’ve investigated to be derived from palm oil)
- Sodium Laureth Sulphate (Can also be from coconut)
- Sodium Lauryl Sulphates (can also be from ricinus oil)
- Sodium dodecyl Sulphate (SDS or NaDS)
- Elaeis Guineensis
- Glyceryl Stearate
- Stearic Acid
- Chemicals which contain palm oil
- Steareth -2
- Steareth -20
- Sodium Lauryl Sulphate
- Sodium lauryl sulfoacetate (coconut and/or palm)
- Hydrated palm glycerides
- Sodium isostearoyl lactylaye (derived from vegetable stearic acid)
- Cetyl palmitate and octyl palmitate (names with palmitate at the end are usually derived from palm oil, but as in the case of Vitamin A Palmitate, very rarely a company will use a different vegetable oil)
This has to change.
I would just like to say that the information collected on this post has been found on these websites:
please click on any of these links to be taken to their website.
Till next time,
Big love xx