John Key’s Government today admitted that production of palm kernel animal feed is helping destroy Indonesian and Malaysian rainforests.
In response to questions in Parliament about palm kernel
imports, Deputy Prime Minister Bill English, speaking on behalf of
Prime Minister John Key, admitted that the production of palm
kernel harms the environment saying, "Of course, it has some
impact; the Government does not deny that."
Mr English also sought to deflect attention from Fonterra's use
of palm kernel by twice challenging Greenpeace to picket the
nation's supermarkets over palm-oil products such as margarine,
processed foods and soap.
Greenpeace New Zealand climate campaigner Simon Boxer said Mr
English's statement showed that the government had moved its
"It's clear that the Government has been poorly advised by
Fonterra on the realities of the rainforest and climate destruction
wrought by the palm industry. The Government knows New Zealand's
palm kernel imports impact the world's climate and are damaging our
clean, green reputation. John Key needs to stop listening to
Fonterra and act to stop palm kernel imports."
Following on from yesterday's blockade of a palm kernel shipment
by Greenpeace activists over 100 people, including farmers,
gathered at a public rally outside the Port of Tauranga late today
to demonstrate support for stopping palm kernel imports.
The 15 activists involved in yesterday's blockade were arrested
and charged with summary offences and will appear in Tauranga
District Court next Wednesday.
Other contacts: Simon Boxer, Greenpeace New Zealand climate campaigner, 021 905 579
Suzette Jackson, Greenpeace New Zealand communications manager, 021 614899
VVPR info: Phil Crawford, Greenpeace New Zealand communications and media, 021 22 99 594