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3 facts you didn’t know about palm oil

As of 2017 graze is proud to be RSPO certified, meaning that we only use RSPO certified sustainable palm oil in our snacks. But why do we use it in the first place?

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stability

The higher the smoke point, the more stable the oil when used in cooking. Palm oil has a high smoke point, which means it can stand up under high heat without smoking or catching fire, becoming dangerous to the chef or spoiling the dish it is used in.

More heat can be subjected to oils with high smoke points without free radicals being produced, which causes the oil to lose any healthy properties and makes it a toxic burden for the body.

High smoke points also mean a much longer shelf life because of this.

Palm oil has a smoking point of 232°C/ 450°F. When you compare it to coconut oil which has a smoke point of 177°C/ 350°F or olive oil which has a smoke point of 160°C/ 320°C, palm oil comes out on top, which makes it a much safer oil to cook with.

Summary: Palm oil is the most stable option in terms of safety when heated. We also choose to use it because of its exceptional shelf-stability, without any added preservatives.

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nutrition

In general we should be aiming for more Omega-3 rich oils, as our Western diet leans more towards Omega-6 due to the abundance of grain and plant oils present in today's food supply.

Much of our Omega-6 and saturated fat intake is from refined fat sources, not from whole foods - options like corn oil and safflower oil contain unhealthy balances of fat.

Palm oil is made up of mostly saturated and mono-unsaturated fats which makes it again more stable to cook with (polyunsaturated fats are more delicate and heat sensitive) and it has an Omega-6: Omega-3 ratio of 46:1.

Certain oils naturally contain vitamins and minerals, depending on the processing and extraction process.

Palm oil’s reddish-orange pigment is rich in minerals known as carotenoids, including beta-carotene, which your body can convert into vitamin A.

Read more nutrition facts
3

flavour

Palm oil has a very mild flavour, slightly savoury and earthy, similar to carrot or pumpkin. This is very important to us because it means it doesn't interfere with the other flavours in the recipes of our snacks.

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What is palm oil?

From the fleshy fruit of African palm trees, palm oil is used mainly for cooking and is a staple in tropical cuisines. It has been used in West and Southwest Africa for more than 5,000 years, but has grown to be one of the most popular oils worldwide.

Here at graze this issue is a big focus for us, and we’re proud to say we only use RSPO certified sustainable palm oil in our recipes.

RSPO logo

What is RSPO?

The Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) is a not-for-profit whose members come from all links along the supply chain.

All members of RSPO have committed to produce, source and use sustainable palm oil that lives up to their environmental and social standards.

How RSPO certification works

Do we plan to change our use of palm oil?

We completely understand that some grazers may have some concerns regarding this ingredient and our taste experts are working very hard to try to avoid it in their new creations where possible. However, when it comes to replacement ingredients, sustainable palm oil is in fact the best option both environmentally and socially.

Although using other vegetable oils seems like a practical solution, it would actually create similar - if not even larger - environmental and social problems. Therefore, the best solution is to ensure you buy products that contain sustainable palm oil.

Read more about sustainable palm oil

Is palm oil suitable for vegans?

Yes, it is plant-based and completely suitable for vegans.

Is it possible to avoid snacks that use palm oil?

If you'd like to keep our snacks containing this ingredient out of your boxes, you simply need to rate them as 'bin' here. This means that these snacks won't be included in any of your future deliveries.

Bin all snacks containing palm oil

If you have any other questions don’t hesitate to email us - we always want to know about the things that are important to our grazers, and your feedback is really valuable to us.

References

  1. Blankson H, et al. Conjugated linoleic acid reduces body fat mass in overweight and obese humans. J Nutr 2000;130:2943-2948.
  2. Freund-Levi Y, et al. n-3 fatty acid treatment in 174 patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer disease: OmegAD study: a randomized double-blind trial. Arch Neurol 2006;63:1402-1408.
  3. He K, et al. Accumulated evidence on fish consumption and coronary heart disease mortality: a meta-analysis of cohort studies. Circulation 2004:109;2705-2711.
  4. Kasai M, et al. Effect of dietary medium- and long-chain triacylglycerols (MLCT) on accumulation of body fat in healthy humans. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr 2003;12:151-160
  5. Lankinen M, et al. Fatty fish intake decreases lipids related to inflammation and insulin signaling – a lipidomics approach. PLoS One 2009;4:e5258. Epub Apr 23 2009.
  6. Marchioli R, et al. Early protection against sudden death by n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids after myocardial infarction: Time-course analysis of the results of the Gruppo Italiano per lo Studio della Sopravvivenza nell’Infarto Miocardico (GISSI)-Prevenzione. Circulation 2002:105;1897-1903.
  7. Morris MC. Docosahexaenoic acid and Alzheimer disease. Arch Neurol 2006;63:1527-1528.
  8. Schaefer EJ, et al. Plasma phosphatidylcholine docosahexaenoic acid content and risk of dementia and Alzheimer disease: the Framingham heart study. Arch Neurol 2006;63:1545-1550.
  9. Simopoulos AP. The importance of the ratio of omega-6/omega-3 essential fatty acids. Biomed Pharacother 2002;56:365-379.
  10. Spritzler F. Palm Oil: Good or Bad? Authority Nutrition. 2017. https://authoritynutrition.com/palm-oil/
  11. Whigham LD, et al. Efficacy of conjugated linoleic acid for reducing fat mass: a meta-analysis in humans. Am J Clin Nutr 2007;85:1203-1211.

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