Water crackers: palm-oil-free alternatives

With all my talk about palm oil, I set myself the task of finding palm-oil-free substitutes for all my regular shop-bought baked goods.

Not easy work, as I soon found out. There are so many tricky ingredients on the labels that are probably palm oil, but don’t specifically say so. I’ve decided that everything that doesn’t specifically say it’s NOT palm oil, probably is. So, if they say “vegetable oil”, I’m going to (pretty safely) assume it’s palm oil. After all, if they went to the trouble of not including palm oil, I’m sure they’d be putting that on the label.

Water crackers

Label of Captain's Table water crackers shows "vegetable oil".

Captain’s Table water crackers, by Arnott’s are labelled with “vegetable oil”, which is almost certainly palm oil.

This week I checked out water crackers.

I normally buy either Carr’s or Captain’s Table (Arnotts), but I was pretty horrified to find that both of them seem to contain (or probably contain) palm oil, as they’re labelled “vegetable oil”…and Arnott’s does use palm oil. (Yeah, they say they’re reducing the amount…V.E.R.Y slowly, and moving to sustainable palm oil – but by their target of 2015 a lot of orangutans will have died just so we can eat their particular brand of biscuits.)

I spent a ridiculous length of time at the supermarket checking ALL the labels of cracker-type biscuits to find an alternative for us to dip into our hommous.

None of the big brands – Arnott’s, Carr’s or Nabisco – were clearly palm oil free.

Palm-oil-free alternative

I eventually found a good alternative thoughWaterthins Oat Wafer Thins* are clearly labelled with “sunflower oil” rather than “vegetable oil”, which is most likely palm oil. (In fact no Waterthins products contain palm oil – hooray!)

Waterthins Oat Wafer Thins are clearly labelled with "sunflower oil".

Waterthins Oat Wafer Thins are clearly labelled with “sunflower oil”, so we know exactly what we’re getting.

Waterthins Oat Wafers aren’t actually a water cracker, they’re “wafer thins”, but they work in the same way for the purposes of dipping or eating with toppings.

They’re not quite as sturdy, so you need to dip or spread a bit more carefully, but my trusted taste testers and I decided that they have a much nicer texture and taste.

“They’re not as much like cardboard”

“They don’t turn into mush that gets stuck in your teeth.”

“They have leave a nice oaty taste in your mouth.”

They’re slightly more expensive than water crackers – about 25 cents more per box from memory – but I’d pay that to get the thugs to leave the orangutans alone, and to support a business that is bravely avoiding palm oil. Go Waterthins!

Waterthins Oat Thins packaging.

And the winner is Waterthins Oat Thins!

*I should probably add that I’m in no way connected with Waterthins – I’d never even heard of them until today, so this is not an advertisement.

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