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Girl Scout Cookies Controversy: A Family Dinner Table Talk

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This week's Family Dinner Table Talk, from HuffPost and The Family Dinner book:

Girl Scout cookies have been much loved for years, but it sounds like the recipe might need an upgrade. Two troop members and high school sophomores, Rhiannon Tomtishen and Madison Vorva, have petitioned the parent organization to stop using palm oil in Girl Scout cookies, or use palm oil that is sustainably sourced.

The Girl Scouts organization has defended the use of palm oil, and claim that the taste would be altered if another ingredient was used. Well, not everyone is buying the Girl Scouts' stance, including the granddaughter of the founder of the Girl Scouts. She says that her grandmother "would oppose the use of palm oil in Girl Scout cookies -- a degradation of the product, by the way, as they originally called for butter -- because the cultivation and export of palm oil is destroying rainforests in Southeast Asia and the lives of girls in those countries." As of this writing, palm oil remains in Girl Scout cookies.

Do you think that the Girl Scouts should stop using palm oil in their cookies? Would you buy them knowing they contain an ingredient that contributes to destroying rainforests? Do you think this campaign is an effective method of persuasion on the palm oil issue? How should one persuade others to join a cause? What are the instances in which palm oil use is okay? How does this cookie controversy affect the Girl Scouts organization overall?

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