By Katherine Martinko | Look for sustainable palm oil—or none at all—in the treats you buy. | Fact checked by Haley Mast
Within a few days, many of us will have hordes of lively trick-or-treaters at our front doors, their bags and baskets held out in hopes of a good candy haul. Our job as good neighbors is, of course, to comply with that, helping these children to realize their dreams of amassing the candy stash to beat all stashes. And so we buy boxes of treats ahead of the big night, supporting all the big candy brands whose delectable concoctions have become familiar favorites over the years.
The only problem is, many of these candy products—delicious though they may be—contain palm oil, and palm oil can be a terrible ingredient from the perspective of the environment and wildlife.1 Most of the time it is produced on vast plantations in Southeast Asia and South and Central America that are created through the large-scale bulldozing and burning of ancient tropical rainforests.2 When mismanaged, this destroys habitats for many vulnerable and endangered species, including orangutans in Borneo and Sumatra and sloths in Ecuador.