Plantations are putting primate infants at risk, finds study

Frequent visits to oil palm plantations are leading to a sharp increase in mortality rates among infant southern pig-tailed macaques (Macaca nemestrina) in the wild, according to a new study published in Current Biology. ...

Understanding greenhouse gases in oil palm plantations

The rapid spread of oil palm plantations and associated high use of fertilizer raises concerns about the emission of nitrous oxide (N2O), a powerful greenhouse gas. A new study by an international research team led by the ...

Is there more to palm oil than deforestation?

Palm oil is the world's most produced and consumed vegetable oil and everyone knows that its production can damage the environment. But do consumers have the full picture? In fact, replacing palm oil with rapeseed oil would ...

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Palm oil

Palm oil is an edible plant oil derived from the fruit and kernels (seeds) of the oil palm Elaeis guineensis. Palm oil is naturally reddish because it contains a high amount of beta-carotene (though boiling it destroys the carotenoids and renders the oil colourless). Palm oil is one of the few vegetable oils relatively high in saturated fats (like coconut oil) and thus semi-solid at room temperature.

The oil is widely used as a cooking oil, as an ingredient in margarine, and is a component of many processed foods. It is also an important component of many soaps, washing powders and personal care products, is used to treat wounds, and also controversially as a feedstock for biofuel.

Palm oil was previously the second-most widely produced edible oil, after soybean oil,[citation needed]. However, in the 2004-2005 marketing year, 33.5 million metric tonnes were produced worldwide, compared to 32.6 million metric tonnes of soybean oil.

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