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
Basiron said the findings on palm oil were backed by
research, journals and data including the American Journal of Clinical
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
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
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,”