I saw this a couple weeks ago and I can’t get it out of my head.
Palm oil, dudes. It’s in EVERYTHING. And the increasing demand for it is causing unprecedented rainforest destruction and killing of anything that stands in the way, including orangutans.
I see two ways of addressing this. Number one: reduce the number of highly-processed foods we consume, since so many of them contain palm oil. It’s tricky to puzzle out which products have it, because it’s usually simply labeled “vegetable oil.”
But secondly, can we also get over ourselves and start using animal fats in cooking, as people did for millennia? I’m talking about lard. Beef tallow. Duck and goose fat. Buttah. Not only are these traditional fats rich in fat-soluble vitamins, they are also cheap and easy to produce locally since they are byproducts of the meat industry. They can also easily be obtained without resorting to pesticides, GMOs, or deforestation. A win for all of us, including small family farmers AND orangutans.
And don’t think you’re innocent if you shop at natural foods stores — many natural foods products contain palm oil because, let’s be honest here, it does have some health benefits and is seen as an alternative to highly processed, GMO-based oils such as corn, canola and soybean.
For many more resources on traditional fats, visit the Weston A Price Foundation.
February 16, 2012 at 10:36 pm
did you hear this on npr?
February 17, 2012 at 9:44 am
I had not heard that. Thanks!
February 26, 2012 at 1:04 pm
I can’t figure out why the traditional fats ever fell out of favor in the first place. They taste delicious! My favorite food on earth is butter, my second favorite is a homemade tortilla chip fried in beef tallow. Pass the cheese!
Thank you for a great blog, I’m a big fan!
April 19, 2012 at 4:17 pm
I hadn’t really known that about palm oils. My family doesn’t eat alot of processed food anyway but still….this is just terrible.