Easter is almost upon us again, and with it comes the onslaught of specialty chocolate treats, all calling out to be bought for Easter egg hunts, presents, and, well, eating! Whilst I’m not generally a huge chocolate eater (I’m more of a savoury treat girl) I still like to enjoy an egg or two at this time of year, so I thought I should do some digging into which brands are palm oil free, and which we should be avoiding at all costs.
The first thing I discovered is it often isn’t that a brand is palm oil free, but rather that some of their products are, and some aren’t. Generally, solid (or hollow) chocolate eggs, bunnies and blocks are more likely to be palm oil free, whereas those with a cream-filled, or similar, centre more often still include palm oil. The companies say this is because they are yet to find a suitable replacement, but that doesn’t mean we should be supporting them!
Cadbury and Lindt are good examples of this – the Cadbury Dairy Milk eggs are free from palm oil, but the Caramello version sadly still contains palm oil. Similarly, Lindt Gold Bunnies are palm oil free, but the Lindor filled eggs are not. Some other Cadbury products to avoid include the Creme Eggs, Roses and the Strawberry Eggs. The Old Gold, Crunchie and Smartie-Filled eggs are all palm oil free, so they’d be much better choices, as are Guylian seashells and eggs.
It’s worth noting that some of the companies that use palm oil are members of the Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil, and are using, or working towards using solely ‘sustainable’ palm oil in their products. There is some debate however as to whether the guidelines are stringent enough to ensure the palm oil is truly sustainably sourced, and therefore I think it’s still best to avoid these products where possible.
The good news is there are some brands whose Easter treats are completely palm oil free, so you can buy with confidence. This includes Haighs, Toblerone and Whittaker, as well as the Easter releases from Loving Earth and Pana Chocolate.
I’d love to hear about any other Easter treats or companies we should be supporting (or avoiding!), so please share in the comments!