Standing firm

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Palm oil has faced a tough time over the years in terms of its sustainability credentials but it is hitting back as manufacturers make big statements about where they stand on the issue

The fats and oils industry has evolved – as have consumer’s tastes and preferences – resulting in a wide range of options for fish and chip shops to fry in.

For many, palm oil has already permanently replaced beef dripping and lard when it comes to deep-fat frying. 

For one, it is a cost-effective solution that provides a stable heat and high smoke point, making it more resistant to oxidation and breaking down during deep frying. Palm oil also contains no cholesterol or trans-fats, making it one of the healthiest options for frying fish. Plus it’s suitable for people of all faiths and is also a pescatarian and vegan-friendly option – making it a great all-rounder.

But that’s not all it has in its favour as Gary Lewis, sales director of KTC Edibles, comments: “Palm oil isn’t just a highly effective and healthy frying fat: it’s also one of the most land-efficient oils on the market. Hectare for hectare and pound for pound, palm oil offers a much greater yield than other vegetable frying oils.”

Intense scrutiny

Historically, palm oil has been the subject of intense scrutiny due to its association with deforestation and environmental degradation. Palm oil is often seen as the evil player in the oil and fats industry, with its huge efficiency leading to exploitative and unsustainable farming practices and very public criticism. 

Much has been done to improve the situation over the last decade, with increasing importance given to Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certified sustainable palm oil.

Gary explains: “We have a deep-rooted commitment to understanding the importance of responsible sourcing and production methods, helping preserve the planet for future generations. 

“We only offer 100% certified segregated sustainable palm oil to customers as part of a promise to the RSPO Shared Responsibility framework. In 2020, we launched Palmax IP, a fully traceable, RSPO-certified sustainable palm oil that sets the gold standard for the food service industry and manufacturers. Not only that, but we were the first UK company to sign the Sustainable Palm Oil Manifesto at the end of 2022.”

Global necessity

Consumer appetite for sustainability has been growing and is now seen worldwide as a major global necessity. According to Frymax, recent research shows more than 90% of global consumers surveyed said they want companies to address social and environmental issues and 73% believe that a company should take specific actions to improve the economic and social conditions of its communities.

This is something Frymax has acted on by sourcing 100% certified sustainable palm oil. Andrew Marriott, brand ambassador for Frymax, comments: “This is important because, in palm oil producing countries, production and trade contribute to economic growth and poverty reduction.”

Some of the palm oil Frymax sources comes from Latin America where it has launched an initiative called Project Mariposa to support producers to manage their palm trees sustainably. Three successful smallholder programmes to support sustainability have already been undertaken and more are planned. The Mariposa logo features on Frymax packaging so customers can be certain the oil they are using supports sustainable production. 

Andrew adds: “Frymax has a long-term commitment to sustainability and remains a leading supporter of those who produce the oils which continue to make the brand the industry leader.”

P100 from Vandemoortele takes an equally serious stance on sustainability. Launched over 70 years ago, it was declared RSPO sustainable in 2009 when Vandemoortele became a member of the RSPO. It has been fully segregated for the last two years which means as well as being 100% sustainable palm, it comes from a single source that is traceable, giving friers who use it the peace of mind they too are operating responsibly. 

Stephen Bickmore, UK commercial manager for Vandemoortele, comments: “P100 is a traditional product that has worked perfectly for 70 years due to the fact that very little has changed apart from the factory in which it has been packed. The product is simply 100% palm and is future-proof in that the product is fully sustainable under the RSPO segregated scheme.”

New products are continually coming on to the market to meet the increasing demand for sustainability. For example, KTC Oils has just launched what it claims is the world’s first pro-palm oil product designed to change perceptions about palm oil and encourage customers to adopt sustainable solutions. 

Planet Palm, says KTC, embraces palm oil’s incredible efficiency while addressing its poor perception by creating certified sustainable segregated palm oil products, offering traceability back to the refinery. 

KTC’s Gary Lewis adds: “By prioritising certified sustainable segregated solutions, we’re not only positioning KTC as an industry leader but also setting a benchmark for others to follow – while making it as easy as possible for fish and chip shops to choose sustainable solutions.”

KTC Edibles 0121 505 9200
P100  0208 814 7830


The disposal of fat and oil is a thing of the past with Synergy Grill Technology. 

The grills are built around a patented system of elements, hot plates and an air vortex system, which vaporise any fat in food, eliminating the need for dirty fat trays. Instead, operators simply vacuum out the carbon dust at the end of service.

With no fat tray, the Synergy grill is quick and easy to clean while cleaner smoke reduces the number of duct and extraction baffle cleans. 
Synergy Grill Technology 01480 811000


Exclusive Ranges

Extend the life of your cooking oil by up to 50% with the Over One oil transfer system from Exclusive Ranges. It works with any oil and uses microfiltration to clean and remove particles quicker, more safely and more effectively than manual filtration.

The Over One range includes three models for fryers from six litres up to 40 litres as well as Electronic Oil Testers that test for TPM (total polar materials) from 0-40%, and Cold Oil Test Strips which test for fatty acids to assess oil quality in just one minute.
Exclusive Ranges 01707 361770

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