Palm seeds, used to produce palm oil, often are grown in the tropics on plantations carved from natural forests.[/caption]
According to the Rainforest Alliance, agriculture drives 80 percent of tropical deforestation. A major culprit is palm oil, which is found in everything from cosmetics to food. In fact, the World Wildlife Fund estimates that more than half of all packaged products contain palm oil, including:
• Pizza dough
• Instant noodles
• Packaged bread
• Ice cream
Unfortunately, the great demand for palm oil has driven producers to clear native forests in Asia, Africa and Latin America in order to create massive palm oil plantations. The result is a high rate of global deforestation that has proved devastating to local environments.