Palm oil is a sensitive topic both in skin care and the restaurant/food world.
Periodically, we will hear from either potential or existing customers asking for our stance on the issue and why we use the term “sustainable” in our listed ingredients. For years, the production of palm oil devastated regions of the rain forests and impacted the indigenous populations negatively. A customer-driven movement started to discourage manufacturers from using Palm Oil in their end-products. Stopping a multi-billion dollar industry primarily through the boycott of products doesn’t solve the actual problem, help the people or improve the world.
Because the sourcing and production of Palm OIl is a REAL issue, since 2004, there has been a tremendous amount of work on the sustainable palm oil supply chain. Several programs have such as RSPO Certified (Responsibly Sourced PalmOil) Rountable has brought producers and manufacturing companies together to encourage better sourcing and work to improve the industry. Check out RSPO.org. Every year, representatives of RSPO are at the Handcrafted Soap & Cosmetic Guild Conference to help both beginning and active soap & cosmetic makers the option to learn who produces sustainable palm oil and how to acquire it through improved supply channels.
While it has taken a long time, It has been successful and many large companies have committed to only obtaining sustainably produced/organic palm oils. Our research on the issue has led us to suppliers who are sourcing it correctly and sustainably without impact to the rainforest or the Indian populations. It is an organization called “PalmDoneRight”. Visit www.PalmDoneRight.com
You may have heard of all the destruction Asian palm oil is causing. But that’s not the full story. Done right, palm oil can be one of the most sustainable oils in the world, nurturing animals, people, communities and the environment.
As farmers, this program really appeals to us.
This program requires suppliers to follow a regenerative supply chain of sustainable palm oil production which we can then take advantage of. It benefits the local people, and actually improves the soil. The oil is higher in price, but we feel it is worth it to support the movement rather than boycott an oil that is very high in skin loving fatty acids. Much more Palm OIl is used by the restaurant industry than the soap industry, and they are making efforts as well to only buy from responsible producers. There is a website that lists the restaurants supporting Palm Done Right.
Making goat milk soap without Palm is possible, however in my scientific opinion, it is inferior, especially when replaced with lard and certain low chain fatty acid butters. We use Jedwards International and several other oil suppliers who have shown us a dedication to proper sourcing and other ethical practices, not just on Palm Oil. (Friend of the Sea for example). You will be pleased to know many major corporations are supporting sustainable oil as well. Visit this link to learn more:
I hope this is helpful in understanding our personal dedication to “truly sustainable” palm oil. Through science, it is possible to support the plant, help instead of harm the indigenous people and change supply chains. If you have been anti-palm oil, please share our blog with others so that we may get the word out, change rather than boycott the supply chain entirely for everyone and save these beautiful trees for future generations to appreciate, propagate and benefit from!