We need YOUR help in the fight against deforestation!

This new mobile phone app is the latest initiative from Chester Zoo, produced in collaboration with the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) and led by palm oil experts from Auckland Zoo in New Zealand and Cheyenne Mountain Zoo in the USA.

It aims to transform the palm oil industry by empowering shoppers to demand change from major manufacturers which are failing wildlife, and support those that are leading the way! Buying products containing sustainable palm oil can help protect wildlife and their habitats from the devastating effects of deforestation.

Use the app to check your favourite product’s barcodes to see how major manufacturers are sourcing their palm oil ingredients. It also gives you the opportunity to alert companies that you’re checking out their scores and may be changing your buying habits as a result!

Thousands of products, including chocolates, sausage rolls and crisps have been scanned and scored, with companies worldwide ranked as excellent, good, poor or having made no commitment to sourcing palm oil sustainably.

The new PalmOil Scan app is now available to download. It’s available in the USA, Canada and UK, with a roll out in New Zealand and Australia planned for later in 2022.

DOWNLOAD ON THE APPLE STORE

DOWNLOAD ON GOOGLE PLAY

Cat Barton, our Policy Lead and sustainable palm oil advocate says:

“PalmOil Scan will clearly show which huge international companies are currently failing wildlife and will ramp up the pressure on them to clean up their supply chains. While there are many well-known brands in the UK that are sourcing well, their parent companies globally certainly aren’t, and so we urgently need those big brands in the UK to push their parent companies to do better. We want this app to completely transform the palm oil industry and drive change towards deforestation-free palm oil.”

Palm oil is a £50 billion industry and is estimated to be found in half of packaged supermarket goods, from sweets to cleaning products and make-up to pet food. Unsustainable means of growing and processing palm oil has resulted in widespread devastation and biodiversity loss across South East Asia.

Our conservationists hope the app will make it easier for consumers to spot which companies are using sustainable palm oil in their products, helping to increase demand for items that support wildlife.

We also work with NGOs and fellow conservation charities in South East Asia to restore rainforests and protect critically endangered species, such as the orangutan.

NOW is the time to ACT FOR WILDLIFE.

Read more about our Sustainable Palm Oil Campaign and how we’re bringing communities across the UK together to create a more sustainable world!

FIND OUT MORE

Frequently asked questions

How are companies rated?

We acknowledge that all companies that received a rating are in different places on their journey to use 100% certified sustainable palm oil. We want to recognise those companies that are doing well and encourage those companies that need improvement. We hope that by creating this rating system we’ll accomplish this task and assist consumers with making the most educated shopping choices in regards to sustainable palm oil.

Companies are scored on a 100 point structure and can earn a rating of excellent, good, poor, of no commitment.

  • Excellent (green): 80-100+ points
  • Good (yellow) 50-79.9 points
  • Poor (orange) 1 – 49.9 points
  • No commitment (red): 0 points

In the UK this app scores companies which are primarily consumer good manufacturers; companies whose business is primarily food hospitality may not yet be included in this region.

How often are company ratings updated?

Companies rating are reviewed and , if needed, updated at least once a year to reflect the most up–to–date information available.  We also update companies when certain events or new information would require a change in rating. If you have any questions about a specific company’s rating, please contact us.

What does it mean when the app says “No results found!” after I scan an item?

We use a barcode dataset that includes millions of products and companies all over the globe. That being said there will be products and/or companies not yet in the barcode database. This database grows by over 100,000 + new products daily, so check back often to see if the products that were previously missing have been added.

You can also contact us and we can work with the database company to potentially get those products added in a more expedited fashion. Some companies also use ‘Restricted Circulation Number’ barcodes for their products, which means that different producers and store locations can use the same barcode for different products. These barcodes are much more difficult to track as they are more ambiguous.

I scanned a product and it says it is made by a company I don’t recognise, what does that mean?

We rate parent companies, and these ratings then apply to all subsidiaries of the parent companies.

For example if you scan or search a Cadbury product (a subsidiary) you will see the rating we have assigned to the Cadbury product is based on the performance of Mondelez International ( a parent company).  This is because Mondelez International is the parent company of all Cadbury products and is ultimately responsible for Cadbury’s sustainable sourcing. We also feel this will help increase transparency around which brands are owned by which companies.

If you see a product that you feel has the incorrect parent company or you have questions about the relationship between a product and its parent company, please feel free to contact us.

I scanned an item that doesn’t have palm oil in it but your app has rated it.  Why does the app rate some products that don’t have palm oil or palm oil derivatives as an ingredient?

Ultimately, we’re focused on if the parent company is sourcing certified sustainable palm oil, not about the palm oil content of individual items. When we buy a product, regardless if that product contains palm oil itself, we’re financially supporting a company who has the power to prioritise wildlife and wild places. We want to focus on the company for this reason.

An example of this would be if you scan a can of Pepsi, you will find that we have rated PepsiCo as Excellent and this rating can be attached to all of PepsiCo’s products including beverages that don’t contain palm oil. When you buy a can of Pepsi, you are ultimately supporting PepsiCo so we want to show you how the company is doing and how we have rated them overall.

Please note we will never distinguish which products contain palm oil and which do not, we only focus on which companies are sourcing palm oil. This is to prevent using the app as a tool to boycott palm oil.