If a key ingredient of vegan cheese is solidified vegetable oil (which could be palm oil) and raisins can also be coated in vegetable oil… Would vegans be better off eating organic dairy cheese, from a local farmer?
If you know the cows, or better, have your own, I would argue this is potentially more of a vegan option than funding companies which are in turn purchasing ‘conflict palm oil’ for use in their vegan and cruelty-free products.
The key is ‘locally sourced’. If you are buying organic raisins, from grapes in the US, and they are coated with vegetable oil. You will need to contact the company from whom you purchased them to ask where their oil came from. If it is any kind of palm oil, it is leading to rainforest destruction and the extinction of many wild animals, along with their habitat, poor working conditions for labourers. Not to mention soil and water pollution from pesticides and fertilizers.
Indonesians have been driven from their homes to make way for palm plantations. Most of these plantations are not owned by Indonesians, but by foreigners, so the profits are taken out of the country. (more…)