To get cheap palm oil, top snack food brands are doing business with companies that are driving the last 60,600 wild orangutans to extinction, committing human rights violations and destroying rainforests.
|Call out companies using “Conflict Palm Oil”|
Today, I’m excited to announce Rainforest Action Network‘s ambitious new campaign to save some of the world’s most important rainforests and the last remaining wild orangutans from “Conflict Palm Oil.”
It’s called The Last Stand of the Orangutan, and it’s one of the biggest campaigns we’ve ever launched. We’re going after not one, not two, but 20 of the companies most responsible for putting Conflict Palm Oil into our food. We’ve dubbed these companies The Snack Food 20. They are the makers of some of the top name brands in the world, companies like PepsiCo, The Hershey Company and Kraft Foods Group, and they are using Conflict Palm Oil in their products. (See full list of companies below.)
We need your help right now to make sure this campaign starts with a bang that the Snack Food 20 can’t ignore.
Tell the Snack Food 20 that you demand they remove Conflict Palm Oil from our food.
Our campaign launched this morning in grand RAN style at the Chicago Board of Trade, the primary trading center for agricultural commodities, including palm oil. We publicly named the 20 snack food companies that RAN’s campaign will focus on and unfurled a 15-foot banner reading, “Cut Conflict Palm Oil, Not Rainforests.” Several RAN supporters wore orangutan masks and held signs displaying the logos of the Snack Food 20 companies.
Today’s demonstration was accompanied by the release of our new report, entitled Conflict Palm Oil: How US Snack Food Brands are Contributing to Orangutan Extinction, Climate Change and Human Rights Violations, which exposes the increasingly severe environmental and human rights problems caused by industrial palm oil production in Indonesia and Malaysia.
The demand for palm oil is skyrocketing—its use in the United States has grown nearly 500 percent in the past decade. And no wonder, since palm oil is in roughly half of all products on grocery store shelves. But this gives us, as consumers, incredible power to make change, too. If you speak up loudly enough, the Snack Food 20 will have to change the way they do business. The power is in your palm.
This really is the last stand for the world’s remaining wild orangutans. Only 60,600 orangutans remain in Sumatra and Borneo. Will you stand up with them?
After we convince the Snack Food 20 to cut Conflict Palm Oil from their products, it will have a cascade effect: The Snack Food 20 will have to demand truly responsible palm oil from their suppliers, and, in turn, palm oil suppliers like Cargill will have to demand that palm oil producers in Indonesia stop destroying rainforests, stop driving the orangutan to extinction, and stop trampling on human rights.
In the weeks ahead you can expect to hear a lot more from us about the ways you can plug in to The Last Stand of the Orangutan campaign both online and in the real world. We’re traveling across the US with our The Power Is In Your Palm Tour, visiting the hometowns of many of the Snack Food 20 companies and spreading the word about the critical problems with Conflict Palm Oil. We’re building a movement too loud to ignore.
Together, we will change the way palm oil is made and make sure no more orangutans are killed for snack foods. We have reached The Last Stand of the Orangutan, but it’s not too late. Stand with orangutans now by telling the Snack Food 20 to get Conflict Palm Oil out of their products.
For the great red ape,
Gemma Tillack Senior Agribusiness Campaigner @ProbWithPalmOil
Introducing the Snack Food 20:
- Campbell Soup Company
- ConAgra Foods Inc.
- Dunkin Brands
- General Mills, Inc.
- Grupo Bimbo
- H.J. Heinz Company
- Hillshire Brands Company
- Hormel Foods Corp.
- Kellogg Company
- Kraft Foods Group
- Krispy Kreme Doughnuts
- Mars, Inc.
- Mondelez International, Inc.
- Nissin Food Holdings
- The Hershey Company
- The JM Smucker Company
The rainforests of Indonesia are some of the most biodiverse forests in the world and home to a number of endangered species, like Sumatran orangutans, Sumatran tigers, pygmy elephants and rhinoceros. These rainforests continue to be destroyed to produce palm oil so it can be used in the manufacturing of food products, including in snack foods and sweets that are some of America’s favorite brand name products.
I would prefer my crackers, chocolate, cookies, peanut butter, and ice cream not to come with orangutan extinction. That is why I am standing with RAN in calling on snack food companies to protect Indonesia’s rainforests and all of the people and wildlife who depend on them by cutting palm oil tied to rainforest destruction and social conflict out of their supply chains.
We have reached the last stand for Sumatran orangutans, but it’s not too late to save them.
Many Americans are being made into unwitting accomplices in the destruction of Indonesia’s rainforests—which provide crucial habitat for a number of endangered species like the Sumatran orangutan—because palm oil is in half of all the products on their neighborhood grocery store‘s shelves. In the months ahead, we’re going to tackle this problem at its source.
RAN has just sent letters to 20 snack food companies—makers of some of the most popular brand name products in America—alerting them to the rainforest destruction and orangutan extinction in their supply chains.
Stand with us: Sign our petition and demand the snack food industry remove rainforest destruction from its products.
For the last month, a team of Palm Oil Activists working with RAN has been going to grocery stores to put “Warning: this snack may contain orangutan extinction” stickers on products containing palm oil that may be tied to rainforest destruction. They’ve talked to store managers about the palm oil in the snack foods they sell, they’ve had conversations with their friends and family about the rainforest destruction that palm oil is driving, and they’ve generally been all-stars at putting the snack industry on notice.
Before we launch into our next round of calling out snack food containing destructive palm oil, we wanted to give you a quick update on where our campaign is at, and invite you to get in on the action: Sign up for the Palm Oil Action Team now and you can be a part of awesomeness like this:
In April, we sent letters to 20 of the leading snack food companies—makers of some of the most popular brand name products in America. We told them that we are giving them this one chance to come clean and commit to breaking the link between their snack foods and controversial palm oil production that is tied to rainforest destruction and human rights violations.
Since then, over 40,000 people have pledged to stand with RAN and demanded that the snack food industry take rainforest destruction and human rights violations out of our snacks. Hundreds of people have signed up to take action with us as part of the Palm Oil Action Team.
Our mission is to convince these 20 companies to commit to only purchasing palm oil that has been produced responsibly, without links to rainforest destruction and human rights violations. So far, nine of the 20 snack food companies responded to our letter. Eight of these companies have agreed to meet with us.
Eleven snack food companies have not responded to our letters. We need to let them know that they can not ignore this important issue any longer.
We’re off to a great start. But we need your help to get orangutan extinction out of America’s snack foods.
|Give the gift of RAN.|
Forget Black Friday. It’s Non-Profit Tuesday! (No, we didn’t make that up.)
The holidays are coming up soon, and you’re probably starting to look for gifts for your loved ones. But—going out on a limb here—I’m willing to bet you don’t want to give a bunch of useless stuff to your friends and family. That’s why we’re excited to offer a variety of gifts that will make a world of difference without crowding our world with more disposable junk.
A Certificate of Action from RAN isn’t stuff—it’s a unique way to support our work to protect rainforests around the world and the people and wildlife that depend on them. You’ll be giving a meaningful gift to a loved one while at the same time doing something good for the planet.
|Action Packed Gifts for 2012|
|Found only in Malaysia and Indonesia, man’s closest relative is being threatened by rapid loss of rainforest habitat. Your gift will support efforts to stop the devastating expansion of paper and palm oil plantations into Indonesia’s tropical forests, saving the lush wild places that orangutans call home.|
|Your gift directly supports the grassroots efforts of historically underfunded organizations and communities struggling to protect their rainforest homelands—known to be the best guardians of the forest. Help ensure that small local organizations and Indigenous federations across the globe are supported in their efforts to protect the world’s remaining rainforests for many generations to come.|
|There are less than 400 Sumatran tigers remaining in the wild and habitat destruction by the pulp and paper industry is a primary cause of their decline. Your gift will support RAN’s campaign to stop the conversion of Indonesia’s stunning and diverse rainforests into a wasteland of single species pulp plantations to make cheap copy paper, books, tissue and toilet paper.|
|The biggest banks are threatening to take us to the edge of an ecological catastrophe if they don’t stop funding coal, the primary driver of climate change. Coal is responsible for 20 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions and poisons the world’s streams, rivers and oceans with mercury, arsenic and other dangerous chemicals. It’s long past time that U.S. banks start funding a renewable energy economy.|
Celebrate the holiday spirit this year by giving a gift that makes a world of difference. Thank you for your ongoing support!
For the rainforests,
P.S. These creative gifts make it easier than ever to support RAN’s work for the environment.