Over 300 Palm Oil Retailers Receive Thousands of Letters and Their Products Get Stickered!

posted by Rainforest Action Network

Thank you to all of you who took action today! Whether you were one of the 2,000 people across the country who went to supermarkets to sticker products that contain palm oil, or one of our supporters who took action online and sent 600,000 letters to companies that use palm oil…THANK YOU! You helped make today a wonderful success! Palm oil retailers and the ABCs definitely got the message: consumers are concerned about the problems with palm oil and don’t want palm oil that contains rainforest destruction in our daily products.

Earlier this week we sent letters to over 300 companies that currently put palm oil in one or more of their products. We sent letters to companies ranging from multi-national corporations to small family businesses. Our goal in sending these letters was/is to inform companies of the problems with palm oil and encourage them to phase out palm oil from their products until reliable sustainable sources are available in the market. We also asked companies to work with RAN in the following ways:

• Research their supply chain and let us know who provides the palm oil that you use in their products.
• Contact their palm oil suppliers and tell them that if they are unable to provide a supply that can be independently verified as not being derived from recently cleared tropical rainforests, then they will find an alternative supplier and/or phase out palm oil from their products all together.
• Support the moratorium on palm oil expansion in tropical rainforests.

Companies that currently use palm oil received our letter, a recent LA Times op-ed, and simultaneously received thousands of letters from you. Thank You! Some companies immediately responded with e-mails to you. Others e-mailed and/or called us to express concern and cooperation, while others expressed frustration about us flooding their inboxes and servers. In response, we asked companies to make a commitment to not use palm oil in their products that destroy rainforests. Most agreed, but some insisted that they do not use palm oil (NOTE: Vitamin A Palmitate, Isopropyl Palmitate, and Retinyl Palmitate ARE palm oil) or their palm oil comes from certified responsible sources. Great! This is the kind of information we need to make change in the marketplace and pressure the ABCs.

Finally, you should know, that we are asking companies to sign our pledge to protect rainforests, family farmers and our climate. Over the next couple weeks, we’ll be following up with all the companies we wrote letters to asking them to sign our pledge. Once we have critical mass, we’ll publicize the commitment of these companies and work with them to pressure the ABCs. See the pledge below.

Pledge to Protect Rainforests, Family Farmers and our Climate

As a company that uses palm oil in our products, we are alarmed to discover the social and envi-ronmental impacts of palm oil production and expansion in tropical rainforest ecosystems around the world. Our company is committed to protecting rainforests, communities and our global climate.

We call on all agribusiness companies – particularly Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), Bunge and Cargill – to use their influence with the palm oil industry to require standards that protect rainforests and peat swamps; that do not allow any use of fire for land conversion; and that respect the free, prior and informed consent of communities impacted by palm oil expansion.

We pledge our company to not purchase any palm oil that violates these standards, and we commit to work with Rainforest Action Network to ensure that sustainable alternatives to palm oil from destroyed rainforests are available in the marketplace.

P.S. Check out our press release for today’s events.