Target: Burger King CEO, Daniel S. Schwartz
Goal: Grow oil palms in a sustainable manner that doesn’t clear existing forests and doesn’t disturb peatlands.
Burger King is the third-largest fast food company in the world and it continues to source palm oil, in massive quantities, linked to the destruction of forests and climate. Palm oil is a driver of deforestation and climate change, but that can be changed. Palm oil doesn’t require forest elimination in order to be grown. Deforested land is driving numerous species into extinction as their habitat is destroyed in favor of plantations totally dedicated to growing oil palms, but it’s unnecessary. Similarly, peat soils release enormous quantities of stored carbon when swampy peatlands are cleared and drained. However, this is equally unnecessary because palm oil can be grown in mineral soils instead of peat. At the same time, crop yields can be increased to lessen the need for expanding plantations. Oil palms can be grown in a sustainable manner.
For many farmers in Central America, Central/West Africa and South East Asia, palm oil is a basic source of income and heavily favored for cooking. It’s also exported around the world in thousands of products, from food to biofuel. Palm oil dominates all vegetable oil production globally as 38% of the world’s oil. However, monoculture plantations, growing only palm oil, are getting a lot of attention for their negative effect on the environment. This includes deforestation and disruption of local populations of humans and animals.
Many threatened species, including primates that live in rain-forests, have had their numbers seriously reduced when forests are cleared for palm oil plantations. When these animals wander into plantations they are regularly killed, but all of this is avoidable. Many companies like Dunkin’ Donuts, Nestlé, Subway, Kellogg’s, Ben & Jerry’s, Quaker, Pilsbury, Proctor & Gamble, Colgate and others have made a commitment not to source unsustainable palm oil.
Tell Burger King to make a commitment to sourcing sustainable palm oil. It’s good for the environment and it’s great for public relations because it’s what people want. Tell Burger King’s CEO that sales will likely increase at news that Burger King is a responsible corporate player in the world.
Dear CEO Schwartz,
You’re a relatively young man and have a lot to lose from climate change. Despite that, you still purchase palm oil linked to deforestation, population disruption and climate change when it doesn’t have to be this way. Palm oil can be grown in mineral soils instead of peat, which releases great quantities of stored carbon when swampy peatlands are cleared and drained.
Many threatened species, including primates that live in rainforests, have had their numbers seriously reduced when forests are cleared for palm oil plantations and when these animals wander into plantations they are regularly killed. The Orangutan, a close relative of humans, is threatened with extinction for precisely this reason. Again, it doesn’t have to be this way because palm oil can be grown in a responsible and sustainable manner.
Source sustainable palm oil for Burger King and you could make a real difference in the world.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: David Gilbert/Rainforest Action Network