Give Fonterra a call
Thousands of people have sent emails raising concerns about Fonterra’s use of PKE, its role the deforestation of Indonesian rainforests; accelerating climate change and the damage being done to NZ’s reputation. And the ask is simple - to abandon its industrial farming model and the use of unsustainable palm kernel to fuel it and shift to a more environmentally beneficial method of ‘smart farming’.
However, so far Fonterra has failed to take responsibility for its actions and continue to put profit before the planet. They’ve ignored emails, repeatedly removed comments from the Fonterra Facebook page and eventually deleting down their Facebook page altogether!
All we’ve got is an evasive statement on the Fonterra.com website in which several poor and misleading excuses are made.
Call Fonterra and ask to speak to someone in the communications team.
- Ask why Fonterra are not responding to questions from the public
- Say that the statement on its website does not answer the questions about the use of unsustainable palm kernel
- State your opposition to the Fonterra industrial dairy model as it’s destroying the environment and the planet
- Demand some commitment that Fonterra will at the very least end the use of unsustainable palm kernel.
You can call or txt 021 507 072 or call 09 374 9000 or 0800 262 467
The Fonterra Statement taken apart
Fonterra, under increasing pressure, are making weak claims that it can't back up with facts. Fonterra’s statement speaks of the palm industry as being one which “we believe follow[s] industry best practice in responsible sourcing”, but what it's really saying is that is doesn't know where its palm kernel comes from.
Firstly it starts by claiming that importing palm kernel expeller (PKE) is not driving deforestation which is misleading. Palm kernel is a lucrative part of the currently unsustainable palm industry which is driving rainforest destruction across South East Asia. By importing up to a quarter of the world’s trade in to fuel its industrial dairying model, Fonterra is contributing to this environmental destruction.
Fonterra claim that their half-owned subsidiary RD1, only source their PKE from a single source - Wilmar International. Although Wilmar are members of the RSPO, there is currently very little traceability in the palm industry and only a tiny fraction of commercial palm mills meet even basic sustainability standards. This means that a vast majority of it is sourced from unsustainable sources.
And as Wilmar buys over half its palm products from third parties and has no policy in place to ensure that suppliers involved in rainforest destruction are excluded from its supply chain, Fonterra's claims are clearly wrong.
Fonterra claims that ‘palm kernel is only a small part of a big problem so it’s OK’ and ‘our cows mostly eat grass’ – which is a meaningless statement. The fact remains that Fonterra farms are feeding their herds with palm kernel that is coming from the currently unsustainable palm industry to fuel industrial dairying. Fonterra have to take responsibility for this and end its role in rainforest destruction.
Fonterra’s statement on the sustainability of its feed is completely undermined by palm industry figures that show that this year NZ$230 million – the value of the feed New Zealand buys – is likely to end up in the pockets of the companies carrying out the destruction of Indonesian rainforests.