NatWest Community Force grant video nearly complete

21 September, 2011 § Leave a comment

Hi all,

We are ramping up to submitting our video for the NatWest Community Force grants. We have a video almost complete and I will submit it this afternoon with any luck. You can see our application here. We would love people to vote for us but more about that later!

Monkey hugs

Palm oil project threatens both people and rainforest in Cameroon

11 July, 2011 § Leave a comment

There is a plan to develop a 72,000 hectare palm oil plantation in the rainforest of Cameroon. The destruction this deforestation would cause is devastating.

Have a look at this petition site and if you have the time or the inclination, add your signature to do your bit in the attempt to prevent this loss.

Monkey hugs!


A first hurdle cleared!

22 April, 2011 § Leave a comment

Thank you to anybody who wrote to their MEPs or was part of the EU campaign in any other way. The first step to changing the legislation about the labelling of palm oil has been reached. The British representatives have agreed an amendment to the labelling laws about oils in the EU.

Next step on the continent!

Well done

Take action today

12 April, 2011 § Leave a comment

Last chance to tell your MEP that you want palm oil to be labelled clearly in the EU. Just follow the quick link


The expense of palm oil-free life

29 March, 2011 § Leave a comment

Aoife and I did the weekly shop this morning and we bought lots of palm oil-free things. Among them Hovis English muffins and Tesco Organic wholemeal pitta. We found Tesco icecream that was palm oil-free too.

One thing that I noticed was that our shop came to at least £30 more than our usual semi-ethical (my parents try to support our cause but poor eye-sight and limited patience for reading every single label means that brands I have not specifically recommended or forbidden are bought at will). Since Aoife is a student and I am working a few jobs and not exactly rolling in it and obviously we are living with parents it is a lot of money to put out every week in the name of a clean conscience.

I am by no means badly-off though, there are thousands in the West who are and no matter how concerned they are about where it came from or who was hurt producing it (humans or other animals) they cannot afford to make decisions that limit how much money they can spend on other things.

These are my hardly original slightly disjointed thoughts about the practice of conservation being the remit of the middle-classes. I have no answers but am still plunging to the depths of my brain for them. Anyone who has any thoughts about the issues feel free to comment, I would love to know what people think

Monkey hugs

Clear labels not forests

15 March, 2011 § Leave a comment

Sorry to those who have already heard about this campaign through other channels but the SOS (Sumatran Orangutan Society) in conjunction with other conservation organisations have started a new EU campaign to make sure that in the new review of the food labelling directive makes it compulsory to label palm oil as palm oil not vegetable oil.

Follow the link to find out more about the campaign and to take part

Monkey hugs

Palm Oil Updates

26 February, 2011 § Leave a comment

Recently there have been several different publicised stories about palm oil including UN backed palm oil projects in Honduras resulting in kidnap and murder, Lufthansa being given subsidies to use biofuels including palm oil for their planes and concerns about the use of even RSPO palm oil by Orangutan Outreach. All of these are interesting and worth a read if you have time but most importantly the issues of palm oil consumption are being publicised and discussed by more and more people. The message is getting out!

As evidence, in a recent customer survey ASDA asked if customers were concerned about the use of palm oil in their products.

Spread the word all you monkey-lovers out there!

Monkey hugs

Sorry for the silence and speak up!

24 December, 2010 § Leave a comment

Hello all,

Sorry about the long silence, this is mainly due to being in Cork and having limited internet access over Christmas. I really hope you are finding plenty of palm oil-free treats for the winter season. I have found many in Ireland so I may blog about that once I have a more reliable connection.

Secondly, please sign this petition against palm oil plantations in the Philippines.

Merry monkey hugs

Tell Ikea that it is not acceptable to kill for cheap candles

28 November, 2010 § Leave a comment

Apparently Ikea candles are made with palm oil. This is direct contravention of their sustainability and environmental policies. In a company that claims to be ethical this is a severe dissapointment.

I have set up a petition to send to Ohlssen, the CEO of Ikea to ask for the sourcing of the palm oil to be public and for a sustainable palm oil or an alternative oil to be used in its place.

Use your voice to stand up for the rainforest, again

Monkey hugs

Conservation and education – thinking outside the box and making noise

21 November, 2010 § Leave a comment

Hi all, this is my first post for MASC. I am currently in Indonesia where the devastation and effects of habitat loss can be seen on a daily basis. Most people will not get the chance to come to countries where the impacts of unsustainable demands for timber and other products (oil palm) is driving the loss of habitat. This is why the activities of MASC are so crucial, to educate and inform in a non-traditional way and to target a wide audience. Theatre and story-telling are an integral part of human culture throughout the world, this is a means of education that transcends cultural and national barriers. Spread the word, get on board and break a leg!

Some worrying news has emerged from the agreement between the governments of Indonesia and Norway about the proposed plans for forest protection. A letter was written by leading conservationists (including myself) where we note that while the original letter of intent that spelled out the terms of the partnership between Indonesia and Norway mentioned conservation of “natural forests”, subsequent statements from ministers have at times only referred to “primary forests”. Some fear the posturing is an attempt to backslide on the agreement, allowing industrial interests to convert selectively logged forests, which account for the bulk of Indonesia’s remaining forest and often contain 70-80 percent of the biodiversity found in untouched forest, to timber and pulp and paper plantations. This follows on from a letter written to Alan Oxley and his associates, an industrial lobbyist—of using deceptive practices in claiming that logging, wood-pulp, and palm oil companies are not important drivers of deforestation. Please follow this link for the full story and for links to the original letter, for which I am also one of the scientist signatories.

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