Great apes shot and burnt alive by palm oil farm­ers

Daily Mirror (Northern Ireland) - - NEWS - lucy.thorn­[email protected]­ror.co.uk @lucethorn­ton

orang­utans are re­leased back into the wild. One male called Tiger, who had his first chance of free­dom scup­pered af­ter try­ing to steal a mo­tor­bike from a plan­ta­tion, was re­leased last month.

And some palm oil plan­ta­tions have joined the fight to pro­tect the apes.

Dr Si­mon Lord, who works for Sime Darby Plan­ta­tion in Bor­neo, is a found­ing mem­ber of the Round Ta­ble on Sus­tain­able Palm Oil. His com­pany sup­plies Nes­tle, Unilever, Kel­loggs and their oil goes into 90% of bis­cuits in the UK, in­clud­ing Mcvi­ties.

He said: “We don’t want to go down in his­tory as the com­pany that trashes forests and kills orang­utans. It’s about com­mon de­cency and ethics. It is not an evil crop but it can be grown by evil peo­ple. It’s these peo­ple who taint the rest of us who are try­ing to get it right.”

Michelle De­silets, from Orang­utan’s Land Trust, said: “Ice­land got it wrong! It’s not about cut­ting out palm oil, it’s about en­sur­ing your sup­ply chain is free from de­for­esta­tion.

“It’s true palm oil rep­re­sents a cat­a­strophic threat to the orang­utan but please don’t stop us­ing it. The boy­cott is not an ef­fec­tive strug­gle for change.”

Ice­land boss Richard Walker said: “The cur­rent level of palm oil con­sump­tion means de­mand is too great for it to be mass pro­duced in a truly sus­tain­able man­ner.

For that rea­son, we have com­mit­ted to re­move palm oil from all own la­bel food.”

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