Palm oil plantation - photo from www.independent.co.uk

Palm oil plantation.  Photo from http://www.independent.co.uk

Finally, an app that allows us to scan supermarket products to see if they contain palm oil.   The ‘POI Palm Oil Barcode Scanner’ app is available to scan products from Australia & New Zealand.

The palm oil industry is causing deforestation & habitat degradation, destroying habitat in Sumatra & Borneo driving critically endangered orangutans, elephants, tigers & rhinos toward extinction. It is also a contributor to climate change because of land clearing & burning of forests to create plantations.

The World Wildlife Fund says, “an area the equivalent size of 300 football fields of rainforest is cleared each hour to make way for palm oil production.”

When forests are cleared to plant palm trees, whole ecosystems are lost. In the last 20-years 90% of orangutan habitat has been destroyed for monoculture palm plantations. Palm oil is used in food products, skin & hair care products, toothpaste & even cleaning products.

The app page says, “POI is a voluntary not for profit organization who have been investigating palm oil content & supply chain certification status in products since March 2013. POI encourages consumers to support companies using ethical palm oil supply. Boycott is not the answer. Palm oil is here to stay, like it or not. The only chance we have to save the critically endangered species that are facing extinction due to habitat loss for palm oil, is to regulate the industry. Around 40% of products on supermarket shelves contain palm oil.”

For Mac – http://apple.co/1N5JgSR

For Android – http://bit.ly/1FdE6QG

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