A New Clown in Town: The New Farce of Food Certification

olio di palma

In Europe, the absence of legislation that protect consumers is now favoring the speculation of fake food certifications: the case of the “free from palm oil” claim.

FAKE-STICKERS   The International Palm Oil Free Certification Trademark Program (POFCAP) is the new clown in town. They would like to deceive European consumers with an alleged sticker that certifies the absence of palm oil from products.

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If you need a certificate to guarantee that a product is “free from palm oil” it means that those that do not have that specific sticker could support something “fake”, hence containing palm oil. This is a joke.

ILLUSIONISTS      POFCAP is an Australian NGO, evidently hostile to facts and to the scientific method. They have introduced this sticker to certify the total absence of palm oil and/or any derivatives. Stimulated by the trade war against palm oil, this NGO has expanded its business by taking advantage of the greenwashing policies of some niche companies.

They claim to be accredited in more than 20 countries. False, Fake-news. It’s marketing and they’re bluffing. In fact, there is not any recognition whatsoever by authorities regarding their certification sticker. No European institution recognizes any sticker certifying the absence of palm oil. According to us, the “Palm oil-free” claims is illegal because it deceives consumers. Indonesia, Turkey and the USA have already banned it, anticipating a slow Europe, not very attentive to consumers’ interests but very pleased by the support of growers of oils and fats competing with palm oil.

“FREE FROM ETHICS”      POFCAP is exploiting this stupid trade-war launched in Europe against palm oil in order to raise funds and promote its dangerous as well as useless certifications.

They say they work for the good of those consumers who do not want to eat palm oil for “ethical” or “health” reasons (i.e alleged allergies). Unfortunately for POFCAP, there is no national, international nor global health institution recognizing “a palm oil allergy“. What are we talking about then?

CONSUMERS UNDER ATTACK      These certifications are misleading because they lead us to believe that products free from palm oil are healthier and more sustainable. It is a false message and not supported by any scientific evidence. Organizations like this pretend to ignore the fact that investments in sustainable agriculture and food supply chains are the best recipes to preserve biodiversity in the tropical forest. Certainly, speculations nor crap certifications will help our forests.

COMMITMENT TO SUSTAINABILITY      On the contrary, it should be POFCAP the one demonstrating that the ingredients with which palm oil has been replaced are more sustainable. Why don’t they do this? Because science shames them, proving that sustainable certified palm oil is the healthiest ingredient for the environment.

No supply chain has reached the level of certification and sustainability that palm oil has achieved over the years. Boycotting it is harmful as well as useless.

(UN)-SUSTAINABLE IDEOLOGY     This organization is based on a model that is very popular among various NGOs around the world: it feeds on ideology and carefully avoids the experimental method of science. It aims to impose a type of development that denies the freedom of choice of citizens.

We invite the industry and legislators from all over Europe to closely monitor this organization that undermines consumers’ freedom. We must continue to pursue the path of sustainability, not the one of illusions and scams.

For Free Choice aims to promote scientific information and method in public discourse. For Free Choice also defends consumers’ choice rights against the smear and demonizing campaigns which aim to confuse them and benefit specific interests.

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