Girl Scouts do more than sell cookies, as two young troopers proved with their five-year campaign to change the famous cookies’ formula in the name of environmental preservation.
Due to the efforts of Michigan scouts Madison and Rhiannon, MSNBC says Girl Scouts of the USA will be cutting down the amount of palm oil they use in their cookies beginning in 2012, as the ingredient’s production contributes to the deforestation of rain forests. The loss of that habit is also believed to threaten the orangutans who live there, pushing them closer to extinction.
The organization will also include a GreenPalm logo as a symbol of Girl Scouts’ commitment to the environment. For now, Girl Scouts has told its bakers to use as little of palm oil as possible, and to use a segregated, certified sustainable palm oil source by 2015.
“Girl Scouts’ palm oil use is very small, but our voice is big,” Girl Scouts manager of product sales, said in a press release. “The world’s food supply is intricately tied to the use of palm oil, so we believe promoting sustainable manufacturing principles is the most responsible approach for Girl Scouts.”
The two girls formed project ORANGS in 2006 after learning that the production of palm oil threatens the natural habitat of the orangutan and other animals.
“We hope that today’s announcement shows that Girl Scouts USA is serious about ensuring that their cookies don’t destroy forests or endanger orangutans and other wildlife, and that they’ll strongly urge their bakers to find an alternative oil that is both rainforest-safe and socially responsible,” Madison said in a statement released by the Rainforest Action Network. “As a nonprofit organization, not a food company, there should be no question that Girl Scout Cookies contain ingredients that live up to the values described in the Girl Scout Law.”