KTC has launched a new range of sustainable palm oil called Planet Palm.
The range will initially include Planet Palm Oil as well as three specialist bakery products – Planet Palm Cake Margarine, Planet Palm Pastry Margarine and Planet Palm Shortening.
All products are Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certified, offering supply chain transparency and traceability back to the refinery.
The UK’s largest supplier of edible oils said it hoped to “change perceptions and combat some of the negative misconceptions” about palm oil with the launch.
KTC Edibles sales director Gary Lewis said: “Over the past 15 years, the food industry has shied away from promoting palm oil – with brands either hiding their use or switching out of palm altogether.
“With Planet Palm, we’re doing something that’s never been done before - positioning palm oil as a positive product.
“This isn’t greenwashing – palm oil is the world’s most efficient oil crop, and when customers choose the right certified products, palm oil can be a responsible, sustainable option.”
Palm oil is now found in nearly half of the products found in supermarkets, according to the WWF.
It is used in several areas of grocery and food production, from cakes to chocolate and biscuits, as well as deodorant, shampoo and other cosmetics and cleaning products.
However, intensive palm oil production in some Asian countries such as Indonesia and Malaysia has been historically linked to illegal deforestation and the destruction of habitats of already endangered species like the orangutan.
KTC partnered with Daabon, an organic palm oil supplier, to develop the new range. Potential upcoming products include solutions for bakery, confectionery and ice cream applications, such as doughnuts, waffles, chocolates and creams.
The launch is part of KTC’s ongoing sustainability programme and a step towards its target to offer only 100% segregated sustainable palm oil to customers.
It was also the first UK company to sign the Sustainable Palm Oil Manifesto, an international initiative led by RSPO and IDH to bolster the adoption of certified sustainable oil among the industry.
“In 2019, 70% of the total palm oil imports to the UK were certified sustainable – today, although there has been limited further progress, that number is similar because of the pandemic, food inflation, price increases, and legislative challenges,” Lewis said.
“We want Planet Palm to help restart progress on the adoption of certified sustainable, segregated palm oil in the UK, as we strive for 100% sustainability.”