Sustainable Palm Oil Community: Oxford - SOS – Sumatran Orangutan Society
Sustainable Palm Oil Community: Oxford

Zac Mills

Help us turn Oxford into a
Sustainable Palm Oil Community

By harnessing the reach and buying power of the hospitality sector, we can support the protection of orangutans and their rainforest homes.

When our friends at Chester Zoo came up with the concept of Sustainable Palm Oil Communities, we thought this sounded like a great way to engage people in taking positive action for wildlife and rainforests. We were delighted to help them kick off the first campaign in Chester in 2017 and cheered them on when they achieved Sustainable Palm Oil City status in March 2019. Now we're working with partners to turn our hometown, Oxford, into a Sustainable Palm Oil Community too!

What’s the problem with Palm Oil?

The cultivation of palm oil, an ingredient found in up to half of packaged food products on supermarket shelves, has led to the loss of vast swathes of rainforest in the tropical countries where it is produced. In Sumatra, the palm oil industry has had a catastrophic impact on the forest homes of orangutans, elephants, tigers and rhinos. The solution is not to boycott palm oil, however. It’s a productive crop and has helped lift millions of Indonesians out of poverty. Instead, we need to help the industry become sustainable by creating demand for deforestation-free palm oil. The hospitality industry can make a big difference and be part of the solution.

Find out more about the palm oil problem, and our stance on sustainable palm oil, here.

What is a Sustainable Palm Oil Community?

We have been working for many years to increase knowledge about sustainable palm oil. This means palm oil that is produced without causing harm to endangered species such as orangutans, or their forest homes.

We were delighted to partner with Chester Zoo to launch the concept of ‘Sustainable Palm Oil Communities’ in 2017. This campaign aims to change the way the hospitality sector buys palm oil. Chester achieved Sustainable Palm Oil Community status in March 2019. We would now love to bring Oxford on board. We have high hopes that Oxford can join together as a community, committed to sustainable palm oil and therefore delivering real conservation impact.

Who do we want to partner with?

We’re working with the hospitality and food service sector within the city of Oxford and a 10 mile radius. Partners include:

  • restaurants, cafes, hotels and fast food outlets;
  • workplaces that offer staff catering services;
  • schools, colleges and universities, council food outlets, and hospitals;
  • manufacturers;
  • visitor attractions and leisure facilities.

Meet the companies that are on board so far:

adult and baby orangutan

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Sumatran orangutan - deep in thought.

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An adult sumatran orangutan

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