Cinta’s Guide to Handwashing

Over the past several weeks, you’ve probably been hearing and reading a lot about proper handwashing methods. But who better to learn it from than an orangutan?

On Tuesday, this video was published on the Orangutan Jungle School Facebook page. In the video, Cinta (who you may recognize from the Orangutan Jungle School TV series) is washing her hands with water, splashing it across her hands before rubbing them together- and then applauding herself for her hygiene!

We can learn a lot from what Cinta has shown us- that orangutans may be impacted too. Scientific experts advise that gorillas are possibly susceptible to coronavirus-related complications, and orangutans may be as well. And, with human operations are shutting down across the globe, many nonprofits focused on saving orangutans, including the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation, are closing offices and asking employees to work from home.

It might be hard to stay focused on conservation while you’re worried about the coronavirus crisis, but we encourage you to stay motivated. Use your time at home to learn more about orangutans or find palm oil free products you might like. Even if you’re staying in the house, working from home, you can still help save the rainforest!

~Pangaea Finn, Founder

Victory against PepsiCo!

orangutan laughing

Today, Rainforest Action Network announced a victory against snack food giant PepsiCo. After six years of campaigning- including investigations into PepsiCo’s palm oil suppliers and many letters and petitions sent to the company- PepsiCo finally announced a new, far-reaching palm oil policy which will not only look to eliminate destruction and human rights abuses from their products but will also pressure their suppliers to do the same.

RAN’s campaign against PepsiCo began over six years ago when they began targeting the “Snack Food 20“- twenty major snack companies- to begin changing their palm oil policies. PepsiCo quickly emerged as a Conflict Palm Oil laggard- its policies were insufficient, and it wasn’t making a commitment to source palm oil responsibly. After pressure from RAN- and from people like you- PepsiCo announced their current policy, paving the way for other companies to follow.

But even though PepsiCo has moved on this issue, there’s still work left to do. Other companies need to take action and end the palm oil issue. What PepsiCo has shown us is that our voice does matter, and we can make a difference. So go out there and use that voice to make a difference!

~The Orangutan Gang

New Year’s Resolutions: 6 Simple Steps Towards Sustainability

Happy New Year! Despite the change of date the palm oil issue is just as much of an issue- and that’s why the Orangutan Gang encourages you to make some New Year’s resolutions and maximize your impact.

  • Check milk labels. Some types of skim and lowfat milk actually contain palm oil, in the form of Vitamin A Palmitate. You can avoid this by buying whole milk or finding a sustainable brand.
  • Find palm oil free crackers. The popular brand Ritz Crackers actually uses palm oil in their products; finding a brand without palm oil is as easy as checking a label.
  • Switch to sustainable soap. Finding a brand of palm oil free soap can be surprisingly difficult; the best across-the-board option seems to be Hand In Hand. But if you can’t find Hand In Hand near you, you might want to start searching for a different brand, such as JD Bauer Botanicals on Etsy. You can also look for a local brand. In Boise, one such brand is Our Planet Soap.
  • Use green toothpaste. Earthpaste and Davids are two types of sustainable toothpaste among a sea of palm oil-containing brands.
  • Download a scanner app. The free PalmSmart app will allow you to tell which products are unsustainable. It doesn’t make a distinction between RSPO-certified products and those which are actually palm oil free, but it will allow you to filter out the worst products.
  • Share these resolutions! You can spread the word, encouraging others to take action and help save the rainforest.

Happy New Year, and have a sustainable day!

~Pangaea Finn, Founder and Director

Newsletter 2019.4

We are proud to announce the release of our fourth newsletter, Issue 2019.4! This issue’s theme is changemakers, and includes information about making a difference and maximizing your impact. You can also take on a rainforest challenge, meet Orangutan Supporter Jack, learn more about a featured product, catch up on the latest conservation news, and check out an interview with Lea Rainey, founder and editor of Roots Zero-Waste MarketSign up today to receive our newsletter via email.

Thank you for saving the rainforest today!

~Pangaea Finn, Founder and Director