Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) announced yesterday that they've committed to using GreenPalm certified palm oil in their iconic cookies. Starting with the 2012-2013 cookie season, each cookie box will feature the GreenPalm logo. Palm oil is grown primarily in Malaysia and Indonesia, with both countries accounting for 85 percent of all production. One in two supermarket products contain palm oil, ranging from packaged food to lipsticks.
In addition, GSUSA is taking other steps to ensure the palm oil used in its cookies is sustainable, including, purchasing GreenPalm certificates to support the sustainable production of palm oil. Through the purchase of the certificates, palm oil producers who practice sustainable methods set by the Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil are offered a premium price.
Other steps the GSUSA is taking include:
Vorva's and Tomtishen's concerns for orangutans are valid. In 1900 there were 315,000 orangutans, and today there are less than 50,000 in the wild. Scientists cite the palm oil industry as the biggest threat to orangutans and are concerned that orangutans could be extinct within 12 years unless their natural habitat is protected.
"Madison and Rhiannon have done exactly what Girl Scouts teaches girls: find a cause you care about, connect with others, and take action to change the world," said Amanda Hamaker, GSUSA's Manager of Product Sales. "They are shining examples of leadership in persuading a 99-year-old American icon to take on a serious global issue."
"Girl Scouts' palm oil use is very small, but our voice is big," said Hamaker. "Palm oil is an important product to the world's food supply, so we believe promoting sustainable manufacturing principles is the most responsible approach for Girl Scouts."
Photo: Flickr user, Marit and Toomas Hinnosaar
Gina-Marie is a freelance writer and journalist armed with a degree in journalism, and a passion for social justice, including the environment and sustainability. She writes for various websites, and has made the 75+ Environmentalists to Follow list by Mashable.com.