Nestlé needs to give rainforests a break

Nestlé is using palm oil that comes from destroyed forests

Berita - 18 Maret, 2010
Need a break? Before you have one with a Kit Kat watch this video – 'Have a break?' We need your help to get the rainforests a break and to help you spread the word we’ve launched this video spoof. It exposes the true cost behind having a break the Kit Kat way: you could be taking a bite out of Indonesia's precious rainforests, thanks to Nestlé, maker of Kit Kat, using palm oil that comes from forest destruction.

Nestlé is buying palm oil from companies who are destroying orang-utan habitat.

This morning, protests took place across Europe as around 100 Greenpeace activists, some dressed as orang-utans, went to Nestlé's headquarters and factories in the UK, Germany and the Netherlands. They called on Nestlé staff to urge the company to stop using palm oil that's the result of forest destruction.

Nestlé uses palm oil in a wide array of its products - including Kit Kat. Demand for palm oil has been increasing so much that the companies that sell it are leveling rainforests in Indonesia  to make way for palm oil plantations.

We need those rainforests. They play a crucial role in regulating our climate and absorbing CO2. The companies that produce palm oil are cutting down the lungs of the planet and contributing to making Indonesia the third largest carbon emitter after the United States and China.

Yes, you read that right. Deforestation is actually responsible for more carbon emissions than all the cars, trucks, planes, and automobiles in the world: 1/5 of total emissions.

But that's not all.  Deforestation is also trashing orang-utan habitat, pushing this already endangered species to the brink of extinction, and destroying the livelihoods of local people.

Nestlé's palm oil supplier Sinar Mas is responsible for considerable rainforest and orang-utan habitat destruction.

Bottom line: it's time for Nestlé to give rainforests a break and stop buying palm oil that comes from destroyed forests.

Nestlé is the largest food and drinks company in the world, and already a major consumer of palm oil - the last three years have seen Nestlé's use of palm oil almost double. Considering its size and influence, it should be setting an example for the industry and ensuring its palm oil is destruction free. Instead, Nestlé continues to buy  from companies, like Sinar Mas, that are destroying Indonesia's rainforests and peatlands.

Palm oil producers like Sinar Mas are destroying vast tracts of rainforest for palm oil, pushing orang-utans to the brink of extinction, endangering local communities' survival and accelerating climate change.

Sinar Mas: 'Notorious forest destroyer'

Sinar Mas is the largest producer of palm oil in Indonesia. It supplies many food, drink,cosmetic and biofuel companies worldwide - including Nestlé. Sinar Mas is also breaking Indonsian law by clearing protected forests for its palm oil plantations.

Greenpeace's new report launched today - 'Caught Red-Handed: How Nestlé's Use of Palm Oil is Having a Devastating Impact on Rainforest, the Climate and Orang-utans' - exposes the links between Nestlé and palm oil suppliers, including Sinar Mas, that are expanding their plantations into carbon-rich peatlands and rainforests. Not only are these areas key habitat for orang-utans, but also crucial carbon stores; the destruction of these areas is a major cause of Indonesia's rocketing carbon emissions.

Vast tracts of Indonesian rainforest are being destroyed to make way for palm oil palm plantations.

None of this should come as a surprise to Nestlé. We have contacted them with evidence of Sinar Mas's practices many times, most recently in December, yet Nestlé continues to use Sinar Mas palm oil in its products, including Kit Kat. Other leading companies have stopped buying from Sinar Mas as a result of its shocking environmental and social practices. Unilever canceled a $30 USD million dollar contract last year, while Kraft canceled its contract last month.

We know consumer activism works: we've seen it again and again.  And we know that if enough of us tell Nestlé that we're not going to put up with any monkeying around, they will do the right thing. But we need you to tell them. And we need you to tell your friends to tell them.

You can tell them that Indonesia has the fastest rate of deforestation of any major forested country in the world - earning it an unfortunate place in The Guinness Book of World Records. Indonesia's rainforests deserve a break.

Channels like these are dug by plantation companies to drain carbon-rich peatland, before the area is cleared and burnt in preparation for planting.

Ask Nestlé to stop using palm oil that comes from companies that are destroying rainforests. Ask them to cancel their contracts with the worst suppliers, like Sinar Mas, engage with the palm oil industry and Indonesian government, and call for peatland protection and an immediate end to deforestation. Tell Nestlé that when you have a break - you want it to be free from forest destruction.

Take action

Watch the Kit Kat spoof video and ask Nestlé to stop using palm oil from destroyed forests!

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