Could Africa Have a Sustainable Palm Industry?


Palm plantations are associated with deforestation and ecological harm, but researchers are pointing to ways things can be done differently in Africa.

Palm products, and especially palm oil, are increasingly used in thousands of products across the world, from pizza to toothpaste. However, palm plantations in Asia have come under scrutiny from the internal community in recent years for associations with deforestation and environmental degradation.

Now, palm agriculture is on the rise in Africa, and Imperial researchers have been looking at how there might be an opportunity there for a more sustainable palm industry.

Hayley Dunning spoke to Professor Vincent Savolainen (VS), from the Department of Life Sciences, and Dr Tilly Collins (TC), from the Centre for Environmental Policy, about a new report exploring pathways to sustainable palm in Africa, recently published in Current Research in Environmental Sustainability.

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