Krispy Kreme follows competitor into sustainable palm oil commitment

US doughnut supplier Krispy Kreme has made a pledge to only source 100% responsible, deforestation-free palm oil less than 24 hours after rival firm Dunkin' Donuts made its own commitment.

The decision follows a June report by environmental activists Forest Heroes which revealed that the two companies, as well as Canadian chain Tim Hortons, were frying doughnuts in palm oil connected to the destruction of rainforests.

The Forest Heroes campaign has seen consumers and investors across the US urging Krispy Kreme to stop frying its doughnuts in oil sourced from cleared rainforests. The company has gone one step further by committing to a deadline for compliance across its global operations.

Forest Heroes campaign director Deborah Lapidus said: “The one-two punch of Dunkin’ Donuts and Krispy Kreme going deforestation-free signal a rapid shift in the U.S. fast food industry.

“Consumers and shareholders are making their voices heard. We’re seeing real global momentum towards a second green revolution in which growing food does not have to mean destroying forests, and that’s sweet indeed.”

Key principles

The new commitments from both Dunkin’ Donuts and Krispy Kreme require suppliers to adhere to the following set of principles:


  • No Deforestation – suppliers must protect forests, endangered species’ habitats, lands with high carbon stock and peatland of any depth. 
  • No Exploitation – suppliers are required to protect human and worker rights and obtain free, prior and informed consent from communities for all development on their lands. 
  • Traceability – the companies are working with suppliers to trace all palm oil back to the preliminary plantation sources. 

As of today, two of the three major doughnut companies analysed in the report have adopted responsible sourcing for their palm oil. Only Tim Hortons is yet to announce a similar policy to clean up its supply chain.

Lois Vallely

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