One Day After Dunkin’, Krispy Kreme Commits to Zero-Deforestation Doughnuts

Here is the official Forest Heroes press release about today’s exciting news. 


One Day After Dunkin’, Krispy Kreme Commits to Zero-Deforestation Doughnuts

WINSTON-SALEM, NC – The doughnut business became a lot sweeter today as Krispy Kreme committed to source 100% responsible, deforestation-free palm oil. The move comes one day after industry giant Dunkin’ Donuts made its own commitment to only source from companies that protect forests and worker and community rights.

“The one-two punch of Dunkin’ Donuts and Krispy Kreme going deforestation-free signal a rapid shift in the U.S. fast food industry,” said Deborah Lapidus, Forest Heroes Campaign Director. “Irresponsible palm oil has been a hole, so to speak, in the environmental record of the doughnut industry. Now, consumers who care about forests and wildlife can know that indulging in a tasty treat won’t threaten tigers and orangutans.”

On Tuesday, Dunkin’ announced a new policy to strengthen its environmental standards by only purchasing palm oil from companies not linked to deforestation. Less than 24 hours later, Krispy Kreme followed Dunkin’s lead. Krispy Kreme went one step further by committing to a deadline for compliance across its global operations. The move was hailed by Forest Heroes as a true “race to the top.”

The announcements follow months of action by the Forest Heroes campaign, consumers and investors across the U.S. that have urged Krispy Kreme to stop frying its doughnuts in oil sourced from cleared rainforests. Over the last several months, dozens of activists have turned out in tiger suits and held banners in support of forest friendly doughnuts at early morning Krispy Kreme store openings in Delaware, Florida, and Tennessee,. Hundreds of thousands of activists, many with the organization have taken action online to call on Krispy Kreme to eliminate deforestation from its supply chain.

Photos and accounts of the actions in different parts of the country are available at

In June, Forest Heroes launched the campaign by releasing a report, Deforestation Doughnuts, which talked about how Dunkin’, Krispy, and Canadian doughnut mega-chain Tim Hortons were frying doughnuts in palm oil connected to destruction of rainforests in Southeast Asia and elsewhere. As of today, two of the three major doughnut companies analyzed in the report have adopted responsible sourcing for their palm oil. Only the Canadian company Tim Hortons is yet to announce a policy to clean up its own supply chain.

“If Americans can eat deforestation-free doughnuts, what is Tim Hortons waiting for, eh?” said Kevin Grandia, Forest Heroes Canada campaign coordinator.

Palm oil is a $50 billion a year commodity found in thousands of snack foods and other consumer products, but its most visible use in North America is in doughnuts. Commercial doughnut companies like Dunkin’, Krispy Kreme, and Tim Hortons fry their doughnuts directly in palm oil, which is often the second ingredient listed after flour. Palm oil plantations have driven widespread destruction of tropical rainforests – pushing wildlife like Sumatran tigers and orangutans to the edge of extinction, exploiting local communities and workers, and adding enormous climate pollution to the atmosphere.

The new commitments from both Dunkin’ and Krispy Kreme require suppliers to adhere to the following principles:

  • No Deforestation: Suppliers must protect forests, endangered species habitat, lands with high carbon stock, and peatland of any depth.
  • No Exploitation: Suppliers are required to protect human and worker rights, and obtain Free, Prior, and Informed Consent from communities for all development on their lands.
  • Traceability: The companies are working with suppliers to trace all palm oil back to the preliminary plantation sources.

Today, over 60 percent of the global palm oil trade is covered by zero-deforestation policies. Krispy Kreme and Dunkin’ join a growing number of consumer brands that have adopted responsible palm oil sourcing commitments, including Nestlé, Kellogg’s, Mars, General Mills, ConAgra, Johnson & Johnson, and many others.

“The doughnut industry has undergone a dramatic transformation in just the last couple of days,” said Lapidus. “Consumers and shareholders are making their voices heard. We’re seeing real global momentum towards a second green revolution in which growing food does not have to mean destroying forests, and that’s sweet indeed.”

Krispy Kreme’s new commitments for responsible palm oil can be found here.  Then, open the FAQ regarding sustainable palm oil.

Dunkin’s press announcement of its new responsible palm oil standards can be found on MarketWatch.

On September 17, 2014

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