Updated: Feb 27, 2020
FFPC uses a LOT of coconut oil. It’s one of the ingredients we use that is widely grown on US soil for mass distribution. With that said, you might say, isn’t coconut oil a form of palm oil and isn’t palm oil really bad for the environment? Well, yes, palm oil production is responsible for massive deforestation, destruction of animal habitat, and the demise of local, family farms in Malaysia, Indonesia and Southeast Asia. Yes, coconut oil comes from a palm tree that produces coconuts. While in the same family, coconut trees are the only genus of the species, Cocos Nucifera. Farming of this tree is not linked to the kind of destruction that makes “palm” oil so devastating to local ecosystems. With that said, you can see that coconut oil is not the same as the oil extracted from the pulp of the fruit of the oil palms, Elaeis guineensis, Elaeis oleifera. Now that distinction is out of the way, we should say that FFPC also uses palm fruit oil. It is an integral part of making our soaps so awesome and long-lasting! So, let's talk about this controversial oil and why on earth we would use it.
If there were no alternative to the horrid production of this exceptional ingredient, we would not be using any palm oil. The good news is that all over the world there are organizations making great strides in the cessation of unsustainable production and the development of responsible farming and production of palm oil. It is not difficult to locate suppliers who adhere to the practices which are put forth by these groups and who have been vetted under close scrutiny and are found to be truthful and transparent in their processes. The palm oil supplier for our soaps is the first American company granted 100% Sustainable Identity by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil, a partnership that places stringent requirements on companies seeking certification.
RSPO is comprised of palm oil producers, purchasers and non-governmental environmental groups, all concerned with the effects of palm oil usage. In a (coco)nut shell, you can feel good about the impact of purchasing our soaps, as we endorse these global efforts to end irresponsible practices by supporting American suppliers who arduously obtained this, among many other certifications.
Hopefully, you’re a little more informed now about the practices and the watch dogs of those practices and will do your part by seeking out products created with sustainable palm oil and by companies who aren’t afraid to talk about palm!