After UK supermarket Iceland was banned from airing a campaign video produced by Greenpeace as its Christmas ad, awareness of the plight of the orangutans is at an all time high. Enter Lush.
The ethical cosmetics company has produced a limited edition soap, named Orangutan Soap, scented with patchouli and orange, to help fund a further reforestation project for an ex-palm plantation after a successful fundraising campaign in 2017 to do the same with charity Sumatran Orangutan Society (SOS).
The soap is, of course, palm oil-free, and just 14,600 have been produced, to mirror the number of orangutans that remain in the wild.
“It was the Sumatran Orangutan Society who first took the time to show me, first hand, the impact that our ingredients were having in Sumatra,” said Head Buyer Simon Constantine. “Since then we established a commitment to change the way Lush works, removing palm oil from our soap base and glycerine for example, and to try to rectify the damage that was done.
“I think this was a turning point, to realise that we can’t just do the least-bad thing any more, but had to commit to creating solutions to the problems that palm and other ingredients cause. I have yet to meet as effective an organisation that can show real solutions on the ground, regrowing over 500 hectares of rainforest on land that was illegal palm plantations just 10 years ago.”