Filed under: Environment/Ecology | Tags: biofuels, Environmental, Food labelling
The Government has announced its intention to source all palm oil used in its central food and catering services from sustainable sources by the end of 2015. The Government will also set up an advice and information service to help UK businesses and government procurers work towards 100 % sustainable palm oil.
Deforestation is a major contributor to climate change and does arise in some areas of the world as a result of palm oil production. Palm oil and palm kernel oil are used in the food industry as frying fats and as ingredients in a wide range of foods such as biscuits, margarine, snacks and bakery products. They are also used in the production of biodiesel, in animal feed, and soaps and other cleaning products and cosmetics.
The question, from a measurement standpoint, is whether there is any laboratory test that can verify that palm oil is from a sustainable source or not? We know that geographical origin can be ascertained using techniques such as isotope-ratio mass spectrometry (IRMS), so can we predict a need for such services when this laudable scheme is implemented fully?
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