Palm oil is being eliminated by Spanish retailers in branded products

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Palm oil is being phased out by Spanish retailers in branded products. A path now marked out, where consumAtors have decided to stop taking the bait from Big Food‘s hoaxes.

The Spanish revolution against tropical fat stems from the initiatives of OCU, (1) the first consumer association. Which-as well as AltroConsumo in Italy-has advised against the purchase of products containing it.

Why palm oil is being eliminated from Spanish GDO.

OCU’s analysis is lucid in considering the toxicity issues of process contaminants that palm contains in far greater quantities than other oils. With serious health risks, of children especially, that Big Food has deliberately ignored in the name of profit maximization. For at least 12 years, as we have shown in the Palma-leaks.

But the most serious problem, which Spanish consumers point out well, is that of land robbery and the exploitation of child labor in slave-like conditions. With exposure among other things to neurotoxic pesticides banned everywhere, such as paraquat.

The Spanish, like us for that matter, have well understood that the ‘sustainable palm’ certification is worth nothing compared to the ecological disasters caused by intensive monoculture. Prohibitive greenhouse gas emissions linger for decades, soils are irreversibly eroded, and biodiversity is exterminated with them.

Large chains changing recipes

SuperSano, a small chain of eco-friendly stores, was the first to meet the sensitivity of Iberian consumAtors. And within days she was followed by giants. Alcampo, the first large-scale retail chain in Spain, immediately declared a commitment to eliminate palm from its branded products. (2) Mercadona and Lidl, in turn, report that they are working toward the same goal. While Dia and Eroski still stand at the window, already ready to do the same if consumers demand it.

Notes

(1) https://www.ocu.org/alimentacion/alimentos/informe/aceite-de-palma#

(2) Except in cases of ‘technological impossibility,’ in which the Spanish retail giant will accept the use from its suppliers of ‘100% sustainable’ palm. As Coop Italia has shown moreover, replacing palm is possible on every food category

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Dario Dongo, lawyer and journalist, PhD in international food law, founder of WIISE (FARE - GIFT - Food Times) and Égalité.