Oil palm is a crop that flourishes in the same regions as some of the world’s most precious rainforests and appears in many food and household products. Palm oil has emerged as the main global source of vegetable oil forming nearly 33 per cent of the world’s production mix.
If not properly managed, palm oil production poses a significant threat to species and landscapes and high conservation value rainforest, in particular.
India is the world’s largest importer of palm oil, driving 23 per cent of total global demand from plantations in Indonesia and Malaysia. This trade is a major contributor to deforestation, species loss and land use change in one of WWF’s global priority conservation areas.
To address this, WWF-India works with companies across the palm supply chain to raise awareness of the environmental and social problems associated with unsustainable palm oil production. In particular the promotion of the principles and guidelines established by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil allows local importers, millers, refiners, retailers and investors to commit to responsible palm oil sourcing. As well as corporate engagement significant work is need to raise consumer awareness and encourage supportive government policy to drive further change in the industry.