On-the-Ground Update

For years, Italy's consumption trend has been characterized by a steady and increasing dislike for palm oil.

Palm Kernel Oil
Italy
Regulation & Compliances
Market & Price Trends
Dave Giudice
Published Apr 12, 2022
For years the consumption trend in Italy has been characterized by a gradual and constant increase of disdain towards palm oil, considered to be the cradle of all evils: a product not only directly contributing to deforestation but also affecting the health of consumers. With the supply crisis caused by the war in Ukraine and the spike in prices for this product, manufacturers are now looking for other oils to substitute sunflower oil. Coconut oil, peanut oil, and rapeseed oil are preferred.

Still, some operators say that is gradually spreading a tendency to look back at palm oil as a valid alternative to sunflower oil. This tendency sparks concerns among consumers who have been bombarded with an anti-palm oil narrative in the last years. There is concern that palm oil might have a hidden comeback in early March. The Ministry of Economic Development has approved an exception to the law regulating the labeling of products de facto, allowing manufacturers to apply stickers on the original labels with vague mentions like “vegetable oils and fats (sunflower, palm, corn, soy…)“, making it difficult for the consumer to tell which oil is being used in the manufacturing of the product.
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