Yesterday was an exciting day for all Forest Heroes! A “call-in” day of action generated hundreds of phone calls to Kellogg’s headquarters, all urging the company to use its partnership with Wilmar to help end rainforest destruction.
Forest Heroes organizers set up on the streets of Battle Creek sporting t-shirts that asked the crucial question: “What Would Tony Say?” Indeed, what would Kellogg’s famous Tony the Tiger say about the fact that rainforest destruction caused by palm oil production by companies like Wilmar are driving the Sumatran tiger to extinction. What would he say about the fact that there are only 400 of his cousins alive today?
Local Battle Creek residents showed up to make sure that Kellogg knew that locals were demanding action.
“Since I’ve lived in Battle Creek, I’ve thought of Kellogg as a good neighbor locally and a socially responsible company worldwide,” said Al DiGennaro, a long time Battle Creek resident. “I believe that Kellogg’s will stand up to stop rainforest destruction so that in 20 years my children and grandchildren will have the same positive view.”
Check out photos of the call-in action.
Here’s the press release in full:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 2, 2013
Contact: Eva Resnick-Day, 412-901-9774
Hundreds Call on Kellogg’s to be a Forest Hero
MICHIGAN FAMILIES ASK: WHAT WOULD TONY SAY?
Urged to End Partnership with World’s Least Sustainable Corporation
Battle Creek- Today, members of the Forest Heroes Campaign held a day of action urging Kellogg’s to stop rainforest destruction. The event generated hundreds of phone calls from Battle Creek parents, community members, shoppers, and students to Kellogg’s CEO John Bryant, demanding that he end Kellogg’s joint venture with Wilmar International until the Asian agribusiness company agrees to stop relying on palm oil from destroyed forests. Wilmar has been ranked twice by Newsweek as the least sustainable major company in the world. The event, organized by the Forest Heroes Campaign, was part of a statewide call-in day of action in order to compel the Michigan Company to live up to its reputation as one of Forbes top 100 reputable companies.
“By partnering with the least sustainable company in the world, Kellogg’s is putting its reputation at risk,” said Jez Vedua, a member of the Forest Heroes Campaign who spoke at the event. “But because of Kellogg’s joint venture with Wilmar, they have a huge opportunity to be a leader in changing the palm oil industry. We are out here today as Kellogg’s neighbors in Battle Creek to call on CEO John Bryant to use his influence with Wilmar to protect vital rainforests.”
Wilmar’s palm oil trade drives rainforest destruction, worsening climate change and pushing Sumatran tigers to the brink of extinction, with the world’s population now estimated at only 400. The Forest Heroes Campaign asks, “What Would Tony Say?” and says Kellogg’s should know better, given their famous mascot Tony the Tiger.
“Since I’ve lived in Battle Creek, I’ve thought of Kellogg as a good neighbor locally and a socially responsible company worldwide,” said Al DiGennaro, a long time Battle Creek resident, “I believe that Kellogg’s will stand up to stop rainforest destruction so that in 20 years my children and grandchildren will have the same positive view.”
When rainforests and carbon rich peat lands are clear-cut, immense amounts of carbon are released into the atmosphere. Due to widespread deforestation, Indonesia has become the third largest contributor to global warming pollution, bested by only the U.S. and China.
Palm oil—a product used in 50% of consumer goods from snacks to soaps and detergents—can be grown without destroying our rainforests. It’s happened before, and in Wilmar’s own backyard. Indonesia’s largest palm oil grower has committed to ending deforestation as a result of pressure from a major customer: Nestlé, which committed to only source palm oil that is deforestation-free. Michiganders believe that Kellogg’s should be demanding that Wilmar do the same, or else should end its ties with the world’s largest rainforest destroyer.
For photos of today’s event and more information, visit www.ForestHeroes.org.