The natural habitat of Asian elephants in Indonesia and Malaysia is being severely threatened by palm oil plantations and the global industries that they supply.
Palm oil is a key ingredient in hundreds of supermarket products, from chocolate to margarine. As the demand for palm oil increases, huge areas of forest are being cleared to make way for plantations, which tear into the heart of natural habitats and force distressed Asian elephants out of their homes and into conflict with humans.
Elephant Family was a driving force behind the Clear Labels, Not Forests campaign, which called for the clear labelling of palm oil use in food products, and advocating to stop palm oil from remaining a ‘hidden’ ingredient.
Since food manufacturers were previously under no obligation to list whether palm oil was an ingredient let alone if it was sourced sustainably, the first step was to lobby the European Union for new legislation to force food manufacturers to list palm oil as an ingredient. New European Union legislation passed in December 2014 now mandates that food manufacturers include palm oil in ingredients labelling from 2015.
This clear labelling encourages retailers and food manufacturers to be accountable for their products and suppliers. The response to the campaign was phenomenal. Thousands of wonderful people spoke out against supporting forest destroying palm oil.
What you can do
- Steer clear of products with palm oil in them and ask your supermarket and favourite brands if they use sustainable palm oil in their products. Always check your food labels.
- Donate now, and help Elephant Family continue to campaign on palm oil
- Support us on Facebook, Twitter and sign up to our e-news for all the latest updates on Elephant Family work, events and fundraisers.
Thanks to the coalition members of the Clear Labels, Not Forests campaign: Sumatran Orangutan Society, Orangutan Foundation, Save the Rhino, The Jane Goodall Institute UK, Ape Alliance and The European Association of Zoos and Aquaria.