Palm oil is an ingredient in nearly 50 percent of all packaged foods found in supermarkets.
The problem with palm oil is where and how it’s grown. The majority of palm oil is harvested in Asia, where healthy tropical rain forests are being leveled to plant more palm oil trees in their place—which is bad news for both the forests and the animals that inhabit them, like orangutans.
With names like palm oil kernel, palmitate, palmate, elaeis guineensis, palmitic acid, hydrated palm glycerides, hexadecanoic and more, palm oil isn’t always clearly labeled. So, enlist the help of an app to find palm-oil free products. You can also look for products labeled “Certified Sustainable Palm Oil,” which indicates their production was deforestation-free.
- Available on iOS and Android, the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo Palm Oil app helps you shop for palm-oil-free and sustainable palm-oil products by rating them “needs improvement,” “good” or “excellent.”
- Visit WorldWildlife.org to learn why some common products contain palm oil.
- Check out Philadelphia Zoo’s infographic about the everyday products containing palm oil.