Why does Discover Chocolate not contain Palm oil?
One of the stand out features on Discover chocolate bars labels is a small nut shaped area on the front of our bar with the text ‘No Palm Oil’ inside. Although Discover is mainly marketed on its lack of sugar and its stevia sweetener it is very important to the team that we do not use Palm oil in our chocolate.
Palm oil is a type of edible vegetable oil that comes from Palm fruit, which is grown on the African Palm oil tree. Growing palm oil tree’s is not restricted to Africa, in recent times the Palm oil tree is grown in Asia and South and North America as well as of course Africa. The issue is that to grow Palm oil trees you needs lots of space to get this space many countries such as Indonesia have committed huge amounts of deforestation.
The Orangutan has become an icon for the anti-palm oil movement. In the last 20 years over 90% of the habitat for these creatures has been destroyed, the UN now considers this a conservation emergency. It is suggested that over 50,000 of these creatures have already been destroyed as a result of palm oil production. They do not simply die off aswell, they have been found buried alive, shot and even in some cases killed with machetes by poachers.
The palm oil industry also has devastating effects for the indigenous people. Although they are promised jobs and money the reality is often somewhat different. The Palm oil industry has been seen using child labour extensively and making rural communities far worse off financially as well as destroying their livelihoods.
Unfortunately Palm oil is now widely used in a huge range of products. To make it worse it may not even be written on the ingredients as it can be called vegetable oil. Although it doesn’t affect the taste of chocolate a lot of chocolate companies use Palm oil, even though they claim to be ethical and use Fairtrade cocoa. Palm oil is cheaper than cocoa butter and contains fewer calories; however at Discover we strongly believe we should not compromise our ethics for cost, which is why none of our bars contain palm oil.