Orangutans and your Halloween candy
This is Brittney, and today’s blog post is all about Halloween candy and orangutans! How are they connected, you ask? Well, besides orangutans being a festive orange color, did you know that a lot of our favorite candy and chocolate bars have palm oil in them? Palm oil is found in many foods, cosmetics and bath products that we use on a daily basis. For those of you who don’t know, palm oil is primarily produced in tropical climates (primarily Indonesia and Malaysia, but also Africa and South America) and is harvested from palm plantations that were formerly lush rainforest habitat belonging to many endangered species, including orangutans.
However, it is possible to produce palm oil in a responsible way without cutting down any more rainforest. This method produces sustainable palm oil or “orangutan-friendly palm oil.” There are companies that are members of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) who have made a commitment to only use sustainable palm oil in their products, which helps orangutans and the other endangered species that call the rainforest home. Some of the other species that are also affected by the palm oil industry are Sumatran tigers, Malayan sun bears, western lowland gorillas, rhinoceros hornbills, and slender-snouted crocodiles. All of these animals you can see here at the Zoo! By supporting RSPO members’ products, you are making a difference in the lives of wild orangutans and more! So, while shopping for your Halloween candy this year, check out the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo Sustainable Palm Oil App to see which brands are RSPO certified, or see the Orangutan-Friendly 2019 Halloween Guide!
Keeper I, Primates
(Photo by Morgan W.)