French Minister of the Environment, Ségolène Royal, has had to withdraw its comment to no longer eat Nutella. She had claimed the palm oil industry has a huge impact, but Ferrero, the manufacturer, was even backed by Greenpeace itself.
From "Don't eat Nutella..."
"We should plant new forests on a large scale, because deforestation has contributed to a warmer climate", Ségolène Royal said earlier this week in an interview on the French station Canal+.
"That is why we should stop eating Nutella for example, because it is palm oil that takes the place of trees, which has led to extensive damage", she added. While everyone agreed with the first part of her statement, many questioned her attack on Nutella.
... to "A thousand apologies"
The Italian manufacturer of the world's most popular chocolate paste, Ferrero, was 'not amused'. Even though Nutella contains 20 % palm oil, "it uses sustainable palm oil from Malaysia and Papua New Guinea. Ever since 2014, our entire palm oil supply chain has been rated 100 % sustainable by the RSPO", it says. The RSPO was created by the food industry and environmental organizations and stands for Round Table on Sustainable Palm Oil".
Greenpeace is not in favour of a palm oil boycott as "that will not solve the problems in the manufacturing process". It also does not feel a Nutella boycott is necessary as Ferrero is an active pillar of the Palm Oil Innovation Group with an "ambitious policy" in that regard. "That is why we even consider Ferrero to be one of the more progressive companies when it comes to palm oil purchases", the environmental organization said.
The Minister could do nothing else but to retract what she had said: "A thousand apologies for the Nutella storm".