Heartbreaking Photo.

Via
on Apr 8, 2013
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vegan palm oil earth balance orangutan

I’m “vegan,” not vegan. The number one ingredient in my Earth Balance vegan buttery spread, this morning? Palm oil. In plastic packaging. Neither should be considered vegan. ~ Waylon Lewis

update: Orangutan experts plead for Australian food manufacturers to reject palm oil – Apes, elephants, rhinos & tigers at dire risk if unsustainable palm oil plantations allowed in Sumatran reserve (theguardian.com)

Palm oil should not be considered vegan: I know it’s hard to avoid, though!

If it Contains Palm Oil, is it Vegan? 

Photo: Orangutans cling on to last remaining tree after bulldozers destroy their home (thesun.co.uk)

This terrified orangutan clings tightly to a tree after its forest home was destroyed by bulldozers.

A scared baby gripping its mum’s back and a heavily pregnant ape were also caught up in the horrific ordeal.

They cowered up trees in part of the Borneo rainforest, which was brutally cleared to make way for a money-spinning palm oil plantation…read the rest, please.

This article ruined my day—but this issue is among those that inspire my life. It’s that balance that makes our saving the orangutans, and thus eventually the ecosystem upon which we all depend, and therefore eventually saving ourselves—possible.

To find out how to save the orangutan, simple: Avoid palm oil.

Problem is, it’s in many things. And it goes by many names. So know what it’s in, and what it can be called. Vegans, take note: it’s in half of what we buy.


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About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now elephantjournal.com & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. elephantjournal.com | facebook.com/elephantjournal | twitter.com/elephantjournal | facebook.com/waylonhlewis | twitter.com/waylonlewis | Google+ For more: publisherelephantjournalcom

Comments

9 Responses to “Heartbreaking Photo.”

  1. Linda Lewis Linda V. Lewis says:

    Very sad. But good to know about palm oil. I never buy it, now never will, but will have to check to see what else it's in!

  2. Blake says:

    I have been following this for some time now, and the missing link is always that we don't have a substitute for palm oil. Does anyone have any recommendations? I'm asking specifically for the food business. A dear friend just opened up a donut shop in my town and, with a big proud and happy smile, offered me a taste of her creation. I asked what she fried in and she responded palm oil…I actually felt so sorry for her when she saw my face. I was SO upset…she didn't know about the palm oil conflict. Now she's looking for a "sustainable" substitute. I have been trying to research substitutes for food, and cosmetics, but it seems pretty tough. Businesses, sadly, will do what they need to do…they aren't going to look too hard to find a substitute when what they are using works for the bottom line.
    It's really challenging to ask people to stay away from palm oil, then not give them help in finding another solution.

  3. DanielleDD says:

    This ruined my day as well (yesterday). I am so ignorant when it comes to palm oil but now I will be looking out for it. So sad. Sometimes everything seems so futile. I didn't want to read the article because the mere title of it but I am glad I did. It's the least I could do, to educate myself so that I try to minimize my contribution to the problem as much as I can.

  4. Boodiba says:

    Perhaps the most responsible thing for people to do would be to STOP breeding, since over population of humans is really what’s killing the planet.

  5. anon says:

    i have to agree with boodiba…we're busy culling lions and other animals but whos culling the humans? oh i forgot when america drops bombs on other countries…innocents…one way…what about other ways? we are killing the planet. am waiting with bated breath for the days humans get annihalated … it will be a day to rejoice :)

  6. Janet says:

    Coconut oil from Tropical Traditions. Expeller pressed so no coconut flavor, organic, excellent for you! Sustainably harvested. This is what you change to.

  7. Dee Anand says:

    Here in Australia, we do not have labelling laws that ensure companies disclose wether or not their products contain palm oil. They are simply required to label it as 'vegetable' oil (which could be anything!), making it difficult for one to make informed decisions when buying a product. Our zoo's have been rallying together for quite some time to call for transparency with our labelling laws, however the progress seems slow. http://www.zoo.org.au/get-involved/act-for-wildli

    I guess the best solution for the individual is to stop purchasing heavily processed products (at least half of which would contain palm oil), make everything from scratch and subtly influence others to do the same.

    I was just curious, is it a similar story over there or is it legally required that palm oil be labelled? Is there a general lack of awareness surrounding the subject?

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