Mahal was the baby orangutan at the Milwaukee County Zoo. I have an unusual fascination with zoos, so I visited Mahal an unusual number of times for an adult without kids. Unfortunately, poor Mahal died when he was only 5 years old due to pneumonia. In his remembrance, I will stop buying things that contain palm oil.
Palm oil comes from oil palms which are tropical plants in the same family as palm trees. Deforestation to make way for oil palm plantations is destroying 100s of acres of rain-forest everyday. 80% of the world’s palm oil comes from Indonesia and Malaysia which is the home of the rare orangutans.
Orangutans in the plantations are considered an agricultural pest and in some cases a bounty is put on orangutans. In addition to boycotting products with palm oil, I will write to the companies to let them know my thoughts. Maybe if enough consumers protest palm oil, the deforestation will be reduced so orangutans can live in peace again.