While some environmental activists may consider palm oil to be bad for the environment, those familiar with the issues say it is the opposite. 

“Compared to other vegetable oils such as soybean, rapeseed and sunflower, palm oil is the highest yielding vegetable oil. It requires less land to produce the same volume as other edible oils. Therefore, banning palm oil and substituting it with other crops may result in larger deforestations to plant these crops, as they require more land,” wrote Malaysian Reserve reporter Azalea Azuar. 

Azuar quotes The International Union for Conservation of Nature Chairperson Erik Meijaard who commented that to put a stop to destruction, it is important to work toward deforestation-free palm oil.

Azuar concluded that, “One of the efforts to manage deforestation caused by palm oil is certifying palm oil, though the approach is relatively new and holds the potential for improving sustainability.”

In Malaysia, the entire palm oil industry is nationally mandated to become certified sustainable (MSPO). MSPO certification addresses the environmental, social and economic aspects of palm oil production. MSPO certification covers all aspects of palm oil production, from the field to the final product. 

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