Palm Oil is Safe Consumption Says Malaysian Palm Oil Council

MOSCOW: Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC) reiterated that palm oil is

safe for consumption as well as the environment despite the negative

news on palm oil, chief executive officer Tan Sri Dr Yusof Basiron said.

“Claims of negative health effect of palm oil was initiated by

soybean producers in the mid-80s in order to protect interest of market

share in the US,” he said recently at the Malaysia-Russia Palm Oil Trade

Fair and Seminar 2010 (POTS 2010) here.

Basiron said the “public

was misled” by allegation that saturated fat raised blood cholesterol

level in the body, leading to hear diseases. He said the semi solid

appearance of palm oil was also being claimed by soft oil producers as

not healthy for human consumption.

“Such claims subsided after

research found that trans fatty acid formed during hydrogenation process

have more adverse effect on health than saturated fats” he said, adding

that many researches have been done and found palm oil was safe for

consumption.

Basiron said the findings on palm oil were backed by

research, journals and data including the American Journal of Clinical

Nutrition.

Going forward, Basiron said MPOC may publish more or

translate some researches or journals to the Russian language to keep

its counterpart updated.

In a different session, Basiron also

fielded questions regarding the environmental issue by the Russian

counterpart.

He said the local palm industry had been questioned

especially by the European union on the sustainability of palm oil

production for food and biodiesel applications.

“We were also

been alleged to have destructed the orang utans, forests and loss of

biodiversity by NGOs.

“These allegations are baseless as Malaysia

has ample permanent forest reserve for biodiversity and conservation

purposes,” Basiron said.

He stressed that oil palm were

cultivated on legal agriculture land, outside the permanent forest

reserve.

Basiron said new plantings were done on land that was

legally gazette as agricultural land, 100% sustainable and were all

licensed and registered.

Basiron said Malaysia currently had 22

Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certified mills and certified

sustainable palm oil production.

“Malaysian palm oil is produced

using sustainable and good agricultural practices. Malaysian producers

are also active through the RSPO certification processes. “Malaysia will

however continue to be the most reliable supplier of palm oil in the

world markets and supported by its technical and quality benchmarks,”

Basiron said.

Source : The Star by Leong Hung Yee

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