Palm Oil vs. PKO

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TBandCW

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At a show last weekend, I had a customer ask me if I used palm oil. She was concerned about the gorillas losing their habitat. I use PKO and I guess I did ok explaining the difference as she did buy soap from me. There are folks out there that read about how bad harvesting palm oil is. I really need to study up more on this! :think:
 

dixiedragon

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I think PKO and Palm come from the same fruit - PKO is from the seed, palm is from the pulp of the fruit.

You may want to look into sustainable palm.
 

CTAnton

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first off Kathy unless I'm mistaken it's orangutan habitat in Indonesia threatened by palm oil plantations as opposed to gorilla habitat in Africa. And palm kernel oil is simply oil pressed from the seed surrounding the same palm fruit that yields palm oil. I've seen responsibly produced palm oil but never palm kernel oil.I've always wondered how much a single palm oil plant produces in terms of 5 gallon buckets, taking into account that this oil is used in many countries as we use corn oil, soybean oil and canola. Of course, if they still want to stay away from palm products they can go the tallow/lard route ....
 

kchaystack

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I don't know if the rspo certifies pko, but I use rspo palm.

First, the US consumes less than 5% of the world's palm oil. So us boycotting it would not even be a drop in the bucket. Our usage has 0 effect on the deforestation.

Second, supporting rspo palm gives the organization power to influence the growers that are damaging the rainforests.

Third, palm farming supports families living in the most desperate poverty. If they loose the little income without some kind of way to replace the income, they are going to suffer even more. Rspo knows this and is trying to come up with a way to surmount this.

And finally, there is nothing we have right now that takes the place of palm. Not just in soap, but all of its uses. And it is incredibly efficient. No other crop used to produce oil matches it. If palm went away, something will have to replace it, and anything we have now would take many times the amount of land to grow.

It's all catch 22 I know.

I'm not saying you have to use palm. Do the research, look at both pros and cons. Realize both sides are slanted to get you on their side.
 

Kamahido

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I don't know if the rspo certifies pko, but I use rspo palm.

First, the US consumes less than 5% of the world's palm oil. So us boycotting it would not even be a drop in the bucket. Our usage has 0 effect on the deforestation.

Second, supporting rspo palm gives the organization power to influence the growers that are damaging the rainforests.

Third, palm farming supports families living in the most desperate poverty. If they loose the little income without some kind of way to replace the income, they are going to suffer even more. Rspo knows this and is trying to come up with a way to surmount this.

And finally, there is nothing we have right now that takes the place of palm. Not just in soap, but all of its uses. And it is incredibly efficient. No other crop used to produce oil matches it. If palm went away, something will have to replace it, and anything we have now would take many times the amount of land to grow.

It's all catch 22 I know.

I'm not saying you have to use palm. Do the research, look at both pros and cons. Realize both sides are slanted to get you on their side.
Soaper's Choice carries RSPO Palm Kernel Oil.
 

Arimara

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Well what do you know. There is. Lol. I don't use it, but I might have too try
I have not used that PKO, per se. I used the last of my PKO flakes and I found it to be very nice when capped at about 15% max. PKO, I'm sure is different from the flakes but it's an alternative to coconut oil, which I have to move away from for my daughter's skin.
 

LilyJo

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Choosing whether or not to use palm products is a tough one but we have taken the view that we wont use palm in anything and have tried to cut our domestic use of palm products too (its in so many products from sweets/candies to cakes and biscuits).

Following on from our original research and a really useful conversation I had with one of the major UK importers, I was advised to consider whether or not we wanted to use RSPO palm as well. There is a lot of anecdotal information about how ethical the RSPO organisation is and how difficult it actually is in reality to separate the non-RSPO crop from the RSPO - we have been advised that in reality the crops are often mingled at some point in the supply chain which is why we have taken the view that we will not use palm at all.

There is a healthy debate to be had about how much the UK and US actually impact the use of palm but deforestation is a real and significant issue and the habitat of the orangutans is being diminished at an alarming rate. For us, its not something we wanted to be a part of and it fits alongside the growing demand for vegetarian/vegan products and those that are ethically or fair trade sourced.

We have taken the view that we would not use palm, animal products or paraffin (inc paraffin based products) where we can and have also concluded that although EO are the 'natural' option the intensive agricultural processes used to create a non-necessity means we often use synthetic alternatives. For us its about understanding why we have made the decisions we have and so that we can explain/justify to our customers when they ask why we are different to anyone else.
 

seven8soap

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I honestly can't find too much information that is truly educational and not tinged with funky smelling bias. So, I use lard in soaping, but that probably isn't much better, except for the fact that lard is sure destined for the trash with as much dust as my grocer lets accumulate on it, so in that sense, I think I am doing the environment a favor. That, and I like my pork chops, so... use the whole animal? If you find anything good, please post it:)
 

TBandCW

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As a retired rancher, I believe in using the entire animal. But where I am, there are lots of vegetarians and I know I wouldn't sell as much soap. They don't mind the goat milk though.
 

cmzaha

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I don't know if the rspo certifies pko, but I use rspo palm.

First, the US consumes less than 5% of the world's palm oil. So us boycotting it would not even be a drop in the bucket. Our usage has 0 effect on the deforestation.

Second, supporting rspo palm gives the organization power to influence the growers that are damaging the rainforests.

Third, palm farming supports families living in the most desperate poverty. If they loose the little income without some kind of way to replace the income, they are going to suffer even more. Rspo knows this and is trying to come up with a way to surmount this.

And finally, there is nothing we have right now that takes the place of palm. Not just in soap, but all of its uses. And it is incredibly efficient. No other crop used to produce oil matches it. If palm went away, something will have to replace it, and anything we have now would take many times the amount of land to grow.

It's all catch 22 I know.

I'm not saying you have to use palm. Do the research, look at both pros and cons. Realize both sides are slanted to get you on their side.
I have said much of this many times. All my vegan soaps contain palm and I do not feel the least bit guilty. It puts food on plates of families that would starve without the work of producing palm oil. I just do not say it as eloquent as above :)
 

LilyJo

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Dont agree at all.

Yes in the short term it feeds farmers etc but if we keep allowing the deforestation at the rate we are, in the longer term the lands will be bare thus increasing the rate of flooding and reducing the amount land that is inhabitable. And that is without considering the damage that is done to the habitats of animals such as Orangutans who are abused and killed by farmers because they are in the way.

And there are plenty of products that can be used in place of palm; for food etc it is used mainly because its just so cheap and allows our consumer driven western society to indulge in our unhealthy food obsessions. As for soap, it certainly isnt a necessity, its just a choice.

Everyone has their own opinion and everyone must draw their own line - for us animal welfare is a crucial part of what we believe in and we do not consider that anything we make or sell should be off the back of someone elses suffering, be that animal or human.

So, we dont use palm. We dont use paraffin, we only buy from companies who have an animal welfare (i.e. not tested on animals) policy. All of that fits with what our customers demand which is that the products they buy do not contain animal by products so what we make/sell is always vegetarian and largely vegan.
 

cmzaha

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Dont agree at all.

Yes in the short term it feeds farmers etc but if we keep allowing the deforestation at the rate we are, in the longer term the lands will be bare thus increasing the rate of flooding and reducing the amount land that is inhabitable. And that is without considering the damage that is done to the habitats of animals such as Orangutans who are abused and killed by farmers because they are in the way.

And there are plenty of products that can be used in place of palm; for food etc it is used mainly because its just so cheap and allows our consumer driven western society to indulge in our unhealthy food obsessions. As for soap, it certainly isnt a necessity, its just a choice.

Everyone has their own opinion and everyone must draw their own line - for us animal welfare is a crucial part of what we believe in and we do not consider that anything we make or sell should be off the back of someone elses suffering, be that animal or human.

So, we dont use palm. We dont use paraffin, we only buy from companies who have an animal welfare (i.e. not tested on animals) policy. All of that fits with what our customers demand which is that the products they buy do not contain animal by products so what we make/sell is always vegetarian and largely vegan.
What happened to the animals in the area where you live and they built housing and even new cities...Unfortunately a lot of it is called progress. I also love tallow and lard which uses by product which would be waste if no one used it. Every country has to survive, their people have to survive and there are loses and gains. I doubt anyone will see any great change in our lifetimes when the largest users of palm are the inhabitants of the countries that produce the palm. I am sorry human life has to be above animal life, somehow that is being forgotten. The countries themselves have to police and control the production and deforestation. I also sell vegan (with palm :silent:) and non-vegan with lard and tallow. Non vegan soaps excel over vegan soaps.
 

LilyJo

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What happened to the animals in the area where you live and they built housing and even new cities...Unfortunately a lot of it is called progress. I also love tallow and lard which uses by product which would be waste if no one used it. Every country has to survive, their people have to survive and there are loses and gains. I doubt anyone will see any great change in our lifetimes when the largest users of palm are the inhabitants of the countries that produce the palm. I am sorry human life has to be above animal life, somehow that is being forgotten. The countries themselves have to police and control the production and deforestation. I also sell vegan (with palm :silent:) and non-vegan with lard and tallow. Non vegan soaps excel over vegan soaps.
Yes there have been winners and losers and yes it is progress but that doesn't make it right. The western world has built its economy on the back of fossil fuels and have created a huge amount of problems for the natural world but we are wiser as a society now and we should try to minimise the losses and the dangers for those that come after us. I would hate for my children and grandchildren to live in a world that had lost wild, natural spaces like the Amazon just because we cannot learn.

Maybe its a different world view thing - we share a language but our experiences in the UK vs the US are vastly different, the politics around climate change and deforestation are different and the animal welfare stance is vastly different. Not saying either or us is right or wrong and not trying to change anyones point of view, we have different customers and different experiences.
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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It's actually far more to do with media and perception than anything else. People may want to have something other than Palm in the soaps that they buy because of these issues, but don't give one second to think about having shea and all these other butters and exotic oils shipped all over the world for them - using these fossil fuels and polluting both the air and water. If green and good for the environment is so important, use locally (in country for the U.K. is local) produced lard or tallow.

"But I don't want animal products" they wail. Well, then suddenly they are more important than the environment again and their love of their principles apparently trumps the needs of Mother Earth.
 

Susie

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I am in the "use the whole animal" camp, as well as the "use local", and don't forget the "avoid causing more harm if you can reasonably do so" camps. I just try to avoid using palm in my food and my soap, if I can. I did, however, buy one tub of GV shortening so that I could get the tallow portion without rendering my own. That will be the only tub I buy for at least a year, though.

I will forever sing the praises of lard in soap. It just makes a wonderful bar of soap. And it goes along with my "use the whole animal" upbringing.
 

LilyJo

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I dont disagree at all on the using the whole animal principle - if we are killing animals for food then we should at least do the decent thing and use everything that comes from that animal.

But we all know that industrial farming and modern food production doesnt allow most of us to do that. You cannot slaughter you own animals in the UK (not entirely sure of the specific restriction) but I do know that animals cannot be killed on the farm on which they grew up. Combined with industrial, commercial animal production units its hard to find tallow etc from welfare approved sources or to at least be able to track the provenance of what you buy.

I am all for buying local rather than global but people in general dont understand that; they have been brainwashed by the media to think that strawberries grow all year round or that mange tout is a native English crop - neither apply for the UK. There is a real disconnect between what we eat as a society and where it comes from and I guess the push for vegan/vegetarian or ethically produced products is a reaction to that.

People are more willing (certainly in the UK) to buy vegetarian/vegan products even if they are not vegetarian; the cosmetics legislation has changed what people expect in beauty products and in my opinion the no animal products lobby has come as an extension of the no animal cruelty campaigns, one of the best pieces of EU legislation we have.

Like I said, we all have different ethical lines, we all have different moral viewpoints and we all have different customers and different marketplaces. All I would say in any of this is that it is up to all of us to be educated on where our products come from, what is in them and how that is derived. Whether you want to buy them is up to you but understanding what you are buying is surely the first step?
 

Arimara

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I am in the "use the whole animal" camp, as well as the "use local", and don't forget the "avoid causing more harm if you can reasonably do so" camps. I just try to avoid using palm in my food and my soap, if I can. I did, however, buy one tub of GV shortening so that I could get the tallow portion without rendering my own. That will be the only tub I buy for at least a year, though.

I will forever sing the praises of lard in soap. It just makes a wonderful bar of soap. And it goes along with my "use the whole animal" upbringing.
I got to try a bar I saved from when I made my first lard soap batch almost a full year ago. Why did I do it to myself- Amazing is the wrong word for this soap. It's too weak.
 
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