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Retailers' Key Role in Sustainable Palm Oil

Retailers and Palm Oil

As consumers, we can help force brands to use sustainable palm oil by contacting large retailers who sell their products. Large retailers have enormous clout. If they demand sustainable palm oil, brands will comply.

Ask these major retailers to require 100% sustainable palm oil in all brands they carry.

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Ask Retailers to Require Sustainable Palm Oil in All Brands

Most major retailers are changing (or already have changed) to 100% sustainable palm oil in their private label brands. This is good, but their private label brands aren't a large market. Retailers can have much more impact if they require all brands they carry to use 100% sustainable palm oil.

Walmart and Whole Foods have a history of specifying ingredient requirements for brands they carry. It's not unreasonable to ask them and other retailers to do it for palm oil, yet none of the major retailers contacted for this article require sustainable palm oil in brands they carry.

Ask major retailers to make this a top priority - requiring 100% sustainable palm oil in all brands on their shelves. Here's a sample email (but it's always better to personalize the email so that it has your voice):

  • Sample email:

I applaud your commitment to using sustainable palm oil in your private label brand(s). Please help other brands follow your lead by requiring 100% sustainable palm oil in all brands on your shelves. The environment and critically endangered animals need our help!

COSTCO
Private-label brand (Kirkland): 82% sustainable in 2018. Goal is to achieve 100% sustainable palm oil by 2021 or sooner. View company statement.
Other brands they carry: No requirement for sustainable palm oil.
Contact info: 425-313-8100/no email/PO Box 34331, Seattle, WA 98124
see their Contact Us page

KROGER & KROGER-OWNED COMPANIES (Bakers, City Market, Fred Meyer, JayC, Metro Market, Owen's, Pay Less, Pick 'n Save, QFC, Ralphs, Dillon's, Food4Less, Foods Co, Fry's Food Stores, Gerbes, Harris Teeter, King Soopers, Kroger, The Little Clinic, Mariano's, Roundy's, Ruler Foods, Smith's, Vitacost)
Private-label brands: Committed to use 100% sustainable palm oil, but don't indicate if they have achieved this. View company statement.
Other brands they carry: No requirement for sustainable palm oil.
Contact info: 513-762-4000/no email/The Kroger Co. Customer Relations, 1014 Vine St, Cincinnati, OH 45202-1100
see their Contact Us page

SAFEWAY
Private-label brand: Used 53% sustainable palm oil in 2015; no recent public report found. View company statement.
Other brands they carry: No requirement for sustainable palm oil.
Contact info: 877-723-3929/Send an email/ MS 10501 PO Box 29093, Phoenix, AZ 85038

TARGET
Private-label brand: Used 25% sustainable palm oil in 2016. Goal was to achieve 100% sustainable palm oil in 2018, but they haven't reported yet if goal met. View company statement.
Other brands they carry: No requirement for sustainable palm oil.
Contact info: 612-304-6073/no email/1000 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis MN 55403

WALMART
Private-label brand: Uses 100% sustainable palm oil. View company statement.
Other brands they carry: No requirement for sustainable palm oil.
Contact info: 800-925-6278/Send an email/702 SW 8th St, Bentonville, AR 72716
see their Contact Us page

WHOLE FOODS
Private-label brand: Uses 100% sustainable palm oil. View company statement.
Other brands they carry: No requirement for sustainable palm oil.
Contact info: 844-936-8255/Send an email/550 Bowie St, Austin, TX 78703-4644
see their Contact Us page


Last updated: September 2019

Photo credits for feature image: Burning Forest Deforestation Photo © Pabloborca, Dreamstime

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