Newquay Zoo has announced that they are working in collaboration with local organisations and businesses to try to make Newquay the first Sustainable Palm Oil Town.
The Sustainable Palm Oil Communities initiative was developed by Chester Zoo, and in 2019 they celebrated Chester becoming the world’s first Sustainable Palm Oil City. The campaign advocates for certified sustainable palm oil (CSPO) by aiming to increase the demand for sustainable palm oil one community at a time.
Palm oil is the world’s most widely used vegetable oil. It comes from the fruit of the oil palm tree which grows in tropical climates, for example in Southeast Asia. Increased demand for palm oil has led to a huge increase in commercial plantations, which in turn has led to the devastation of wildlife and wild places through deforestation – one of the key drivers of climate change. But palm oil itself isn’t the problem – it’s a very versatile and high-yielding crop that provides a livelihood for millions of people in tropical countries. Sustainable palm oil is grown by reusing already deforested land rather than clearing new areas.
Newquay Zoo is joining the movement to adopt sustainable palm oil policies and make more sustainable palm oil products available to the public. The new Sustainable Palm Oil Community will encourage local businesses to buy, serve and promote products that contain sustainable palm oil.
Kathy Baker, Research Coordinator and the Newquay Community Project Lead, said:
“We’re proud and excited to be launching the project today to coincide with Earth Day. By choosing to only buy and sell products that contain CSPO, we’ll help protect wildlife and habitats all over the world. It can sometimes be difficult to relate to a conservation issue on the other side of the world, so it’s important that we help people realise that their actions really do make a difference. We hope to lead the way in making Newquay the first Sustainable Palm Oil Town.”
Newquay Zoo is part of Wild Planet Trust, a conservation charity which firmly believes that conservation begins at home and that every action matters. Making simple changes to behaviour and buying habits allows everyone to get involved with resolving issues that they may previously have felt they were unable to help with.
To join the movement, local businesses can make a pledge to switch to sustainable palm oil and promote their commitment to the project. To find out more, they can contact the project team by emailing [email protected].