KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 31 -- The Cabinet has agreed to a law prohibiting the use of negative phrases or indicators about palm oil on products marketed here, said Minister of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs (KPDNHEP), Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail.
He said the move was to ensure that no products with labels like ‘palm oil free, 'does not contain palm oil’, or negative phrases or indicators about palm oil are sold here.
“It will be implemented as soon as possible after the engagement sessions are held with interested parties to get their views.
“This proposal was tabled to the Cabinet and it was passed on Oct 18, in line with the government’s objective of supporting the oil palm industry through the Sayangi Sawitku Campaign,” he said in a press conference at the Parliament Lobby today.
He said checks conducted by the ministry of 2,609 premises throughout the country found 12 products with negative labeling, phrases and indicators about palm oil.
The ministry has advised these outlets to not display these products for sale.
Meanwhile, Primary Industries Minister Teresa Kok said the ministry fully supported the efforts by KPDNHEP which will hopefully curtail the efforts to malign the reputation of Malaysian palm oil and image of Malaysia on the global arena.
“Of late, the national oil palm industry has been linked to the main contributors of deforestation and loss of biodiversity.
“This negative perception and allegation is not true and gives a negative image of products based on palm oil which is not supported by accurate scientific facts,” she said at the same press conference.
Kek stressed that the use of negative labeling was a propaganda supported by European producers to protect their markets.