Oreo Cookie Maker Linked to Orangutan Habitat Destruction for Palm Oil
Palm oil is an ingredient in many of the company's popular products, including Oreo cookies, Ritz crackers and Cadbury chocolate bars.
The report comes a day after Mondelēz announced it has excluded 12 upstream suppliers as a result of deforestation practices. The Illinois-based snack food giant started its journey to sustainable palm oil in 2009 and committed to sourcing certified sustainable palm oil (CSPO) in 2013, according to WWF's palm oil scorecard.
Despite this commitment, Greenpeace said in its report that between 2015 and 2017, 22 of the company's palm oil suppliers destroyed more than 70,000 hectares of rainforest in Southeast Asia—an area bigger than the city of Chicago—of which 25,000 hectares was forested orangutan habitat.
Map showing orangutan habitat and forest loss in Kalimantan, Indonesiafrom Greenpeace report "Dying for a cookie: how Mondelēz is feeding the climate and extinction crisis"
Mondelēz gets much of this so-called "dirty palm oil" from Wilmar International, the world's largest palm oil trader, according to the report. More than 80 percent of Wilmar's palm oil comes from third-party suppliers. Despite adopting a "No Deforestation, No Peat, No Exploitation" policy in 2013, Wilmar has failed to monitor its suppliers across all of their operations to determine whether they comply with its policy or are destroying forests, Greenpeace said.
"It's outrageous that despite promising to clean up its palm oil almost ten years ago, Mondelēz is still trading with forest destroyers," Kiki Taufik, the global head of Greenpeace Southeast Asia's Indonesia forests campaign, said in a press release. "Palm oil can be made without destroying forests, yet our investigation discovered that Mondelēz suppliers are still trashing forests and wrecking orangutan habitat, pushing these beautiful and intelligent creatures to the brink of extinction. They're literally dying for a cookie."
BREAKING: We're delivering a giant Forest Destruction Flavor cookie to Mondelez, the maker of Oreo, at its global H… https://t.co/da4nTWPQT4— Greenpeace USA (@Greenpeace USA)1542128079.0
Palm oil is the most common vegetable oil in the world and can be found in chocolate, baked goods, soaps, detergents and much more.
The report comes on the heels of Greenpeace and Iceland Foods' viral "no palm oil Christmas" commercial that was banned from UK televisions for being "too political."
Iceland's Banned TV Christmas Advert... Say hello to Rang-tan. #NoPalmOilChristmas www.youtube.com
Greenpeace is urging Mondelēz to cease ties with the Singaporean oil processing company.
"Mondelēz CEO, Dirk Van de Put, promised to offer consumers 'snacking made right.' But there is nothing right about palm oil that is produced by killing orangutans and fueling climate change," Taufik said in the press release. "This must be a wake up call to Mondelez and other household brands to take action and cut Wilmar off until it can prove its palm oil is clean. Ultimately, if big brands can't find enough clean palm oil to make their products then they need to start using less."
On Monday, Mondelēz emphasized its goal of 100 percent sustainability and transparency across the palm oil industry.
"Mondelēz International remains fully committed to driving change in the palm oil sector and today's actions against 12 upstream suppliers reflect that commitment," Jonathan Horrell, global director of sustainability at Mondelēz International, said in a press release. "We will continue to pursue existing and new initiatives that seek to drive effective change across palm oil-growing communities. The company understands that this complex challenge can only be solved through collaboration with all actors in the palm oil supply chain, from growers to suppliers and buyers, as well as local and national government and non-governmental organizations."
Rock Band Occupies Palm Oil Tanks With Activists Protesting Deforestation #Dropdirtypalmoil @reallucylawless… https://t.co/oEYp1cdEFW— EcoWatch (@EcoWatch)1537974431.0
New Zealand could be the first country in the world to require its major financial institutions to report on the risks posed by the climate crisis.
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
Eco-friendly outdoor brand Patagonia has a colorful and timely message stitched into the tags of its latest line of shorts. "VOTE THE A**HOLES," it reads.
- 'Go Out and Vote' Patagonia Endorses Candidates for First Time in ... ›
- Tesla, Patagonia Join Growing Resistance Against Trump - EcoWatch ›
This year, the UK National James Dyson Award went to a team of student designers who want to reduce the environmental impact of car tires.
- Humans Eat More Than 100 Plastic Fibers With Each Meal - EcoWatch ›
- Microplastics Are Raining Down on Cities - EcoWatch ›
- Microplastics Are Wafting in on the Sea Breeze - EcoWatch ›
By Brett Wilkins
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the meatpacking industry worked together to downplay and disregard risks to worker health during the Covid-19 pandemic, as shown in documents published Monday by Public Citizen and American Oversight.
<div id="13077" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="11b9fe5ff48ebc437353df6df9c2c892"><blockquote class="twitter-tweet twitter-custom-tweet" data-twitter-tweet-id="1305915938148147205" data-partner="rebelmouse"><div style="margin:1em 0">Just a week before the Trump administration issued an executive order aimed at keeping meat packing plants open, th… https://t.co/DkbXgPm4YR</div> — ProPublica (@ProPublica)<a href="https://twitter.com/propublica/statuses/1305915938148147205">1600189597.0</a></blockquote></div>
<div id="36e4c" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="e7c8048c2755109629a3b3072fcb3261"><blockquote class="twitter-tweet twitter-custom-tweet" data-twitter-tweet-id="1304424041814593539" data-partner="rebelmouse"><div style="margin:1em 0">Meatpacking union @UFCW, which reps workers at this plant (four of whom died), slams OSHA for the small $13k fine a… https://t.co/tnhfKd89ab</div> — Dave Jamieson (@Dave Jamieson)<a href="https://twitter.com/jamieson/statuses/1304424041814593539">1599833901.0</a></blockquote></div><p>The United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) International Union, which represents Smithfield Foods workers, <a href="https://www.argusleader.com/story/news/crime/2020/09/10/osha-fines-smithfield-foods-sioux-falls-south-dakota/5768786002/?eType=EmailBlastContent&eId=f7bf3f03-ce98-4df4-9c45-f44d9a6a5890" target="_blank">slammed</a> the fine as "insulting and a slap on the wrist."</p><p>"How much is the health, safety, and life of an essential worker worth? Based on the actions of the Trump administration, clearly not much," said UFCW president Marc Perrone.</p><p>"This so-called 'fine' is a slap on the wrist for Smithfield, and a slap in the face of the thousands of American meatpacking workers who have been putting their lives on the line to help feed America since the beginning of this pandemic," Perrone added. </p><p>Other critics, including vegans, vegetarians, and animal rights and environmental advocates argued that the accelerated spread of Covid-19 from meatpacking facilities is but the latest compelling argument in favor of reducing—or eliminating—meat consumption.</p><p>"We know that Covid-19 originated in a meat market and that previous influenza viruses originated in pigs and chickens," People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) <a href="https://www.peta.org/blog/meat-shortage-slaugherhouses-go-vegan/" target="_blank">said</a> in April amid news that a Foster Farms slaughterhouse in Livingston, California was <a href="https://www.peta.org/blog/coronavirus-covid-19-slaughterhouse-meat-concerns/?utm_source=PETA::Twitter&utm_medium=Social&utm_campaign=0420::veg::PETA::Twitter::Workers%20Blame%20Major%20Pig%20Slaughterhouse%20600%20Infected%20COVID-19::::tweet" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">ordered closed</a> by local health authorities due to a Covid-19 outbreak that killed eight employees.</p>
<div id="28490" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="48ddd3480a2beb42597d9516ef652f0f"><blockquote class="twitter-tweet twitter-custom-tweet" data-twitter-tweet-id="1252416495990140929" data-partner="rebelmouse"><div style="margin:1em 0">THIS IS OUTRAGEOUS! @SmithfieldFoods allegedly took NO PRECAUTIONS to protect the safety of its workers, leaving o… https://t.co/viAJ026pLy</div> — PETA (@PETA)<a href="https://twitter.com/peta/statuses/1252416495990140929">1587434336.0</a></blockquote></div><p>"It's not a matter of <em>whether</em> using and killing animals for food will give rise to another disease outbreak—it's a matter of <em>when</em>," said PETA. "There has never been a better, more obvious time for businesses to put an end to their dirty trade of slaughtering animals for their flesh." </p>
By Andrea Willige
More than half of the world's population lives in cities, and most future population growth is predicted to happen in urban areas. But the concentration of large numbers of people and the ecosystems built around their lives has also been a driver of climate change.