Do you have the newest version of the Orangutan Friendly Shopping Guide? One of the most recent changes is that General Mills has joined the RSPO (Round Table on Sustainable Palm Oil), which means brands like General Mills, Cascadian Farm, Progresso, Pillsbury, Betty Crocker, Green Giant, Hamburger Helper, and Nature Valley are orangutan friendly choices! The most up to date version of the shopping guide can be found at http://www.cmzoo.org/conservation/palmOilCrisis/.
You can make orangutan friendly choices every time you shop at the grocery store by buying only products listed on the shopping guide. The list of RSPO-member companies continues to grow, which is great news for orangutans and other animals that live in the rainforests of Borneo and Sumatra. The RSPO is a multi-stakeholder group that is moving the palm oil industry toward sustainability. To learn more about the RSPO, visit their website: www.rspo.org
Around the country, Cheyenne Mountain Zoo’s Palm Oil Awareness Team continues to spread the message about how to make a difference for wild orangutans. In the past, the Team has focused primarily on speaking at orangutan-related conferences. This year, our Team has also been invited to speak at professional conferences for other species affected by the palm oil crisis. In June, Mandy, one of our orangutan keepers, traveled to North Carolina to speak at the first Gibbon Husbandry conference. Gibbons inhabit some of the same rainforests in which orangutans live, so the deforestation caused by unsustainable production of palm oil affects gibbons as well. Coming up this month, our Animal Care Manager, Dina, will be traveling to Oregon to speak for the third year in a row at the annual Orangutan Husbandry Conference. In September Dina and Tracey, our Vice President, will be hosting a booth at the American Zoological Association (AZA) National Conference in Arizona, where they will be sharing with zoo professionals from all over the United States ways to help guests at their zoos make informed shopping choices and make a difference for wild orangutans and other wildlife. Lastly for this year, in November, Dina will be traveling to California, where she has been invited to speak at the annual Elephant Managers Association conference. Elephants are another of the many species affected by unsustainable palm oil.
The Team will continue to work hard to make a difference for wild orangutans by raising awareness about the palm oil crisis and encouraging people to take action by providing tools and information that will allow them to make globally responsible consumer choices. Join us in making a difference!