Kit Kat maker drops suppliers who wreck orang-utan habitat

Last edited 17 May 2010 at 11:33am
17 May, 2010

Chocolate giant Nestle has agreed to stop using palm oil and other ingredients from suppliers that destroy the rainforest home of the last remaining orangutans in its popular snacks such as KitKat.

The move to cut deforestation out of the supply chain of the world's largest food and drink company comes just two months after Greenpeace launched a campaign urging Nestle to stop using palm oil and pulp and paper products from companies trashing rainforests in Indonesia.

Nestle had been using palm oil from the biggest and most destructive palm oil producer - called the Sinar Mas Group. A Greenpeace report published earlier this year detailed how this company is destroying the Indonesian rainforest and, by doing so, is causing more climate changing emissions.

Under Nestle's new policy, they will now stop buying from companies that own or manage ‘high risk plantations or farms linked to deforestation'. This means companies like Sinar Mas, Indonesia's most notorious palm oil and pulp and paper supplier, would be ditched by Nestle unless they stop destroying rainforests.

Greenpeace's campaign to save the Indonesian rainforest will now target HSBC. The High Street bank is funding Sinar Mas.

Ian Duff, forest campaigner for Greenpeace, said: "Pretty much everyone likes a bar of chocolate. But no-one wants their teatime treat to push orangutans towards extinction.

"Nestle have now done the right thing and announced that they will drop suppliers that are linked to rainforest destruction.

"But there are still many other companies that are peddling well-known goods that are linked to rainforest destruction. They should follow Nestle's example, and do their bit for the orangutans."

To launch the campaign against Nestle, Greenpeace released a video showing an unwitting office worker taking a break to enjoy a KitKat but instead chomping into an orangutan finger. The video has since received almost 1.5million views.

Other large companies, such as Unilever and Kraft, have also taken action to end contracts with the Sinar Mas Group. The Group also owns Asia Pulp and Paper, the largest paper company in Indonesia, who are notorious for trashing rainforests for their paper products.

Indonesia has one of the fastest rates of forest destruction in the world. It holds the world record for the fastest disappearing rainforest amongst all major forested nations on the planet. Since 1950, over 74 million hectares of Indonesia's forests have been destroyed, with additional areas being severely degraded.

Every year 1.8 billion tonnes of climate changing greenhouse gas emissions are released by the degradation and burning of its peatlands alone. Such destruction has made Indonesia the world's third largest greenhouse gas emitter, after the US and China.


Greenpeace press office: 020 7865 8255

To read Caught Red-Handed: How Nestle's Use of Palm Oil is Having a Devastating Impact on Rainforests, the Climate and Orangutans go to

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