Archive for October 17th, 2008

October 17, 2008

Be A Contender (and Activist!) at Oceana

 Peter Batson / Peter David /

I’m a huge fan of the outreach campaigns supported by Oceana.  From trawling to Arctic melt to sea turtles to sharks, they’ve taken the steps that make it easy for the public to make their voices heard on ocean conservation and to become informed citizens.

A few weeks ago I was trolling through my local Target aisle looking for a new moisturizer for my freckled face.  My inner nerd makes me read all the labels and I noticed one ominous ingredient on the list of several national brands: squalane.  Why the paranoia?  Squalane sounded a lot like squalous to me, and if I remember my Jaws correctly its Dreyfus’ nerdy marine biology character that mentions the word in relation to sharks!

With a little home research it appears that there are two main sources for squalane: from the liver oils of deep water sharks (or perhaps any sharks, the deep water part may be hype from the marketers) and olive oil.  The problem is, how the heck do you know who is using which source? 

Well, in some cases, they give it away.  Oceana is currently running a letter campaign against one company in particular that is using squalane that most certainly is from an ocean source.  How do they know?  Its the premise of their marketing!

I would really like to know how a concerned consumer can go about learning if brands like Aveeno, L’Oreal, and others are using a plant source or a shark source for their squalane.  For now I’m going to avoid all products that make use of it at all while I contact the companies and see if they will shed some light on the situation.

Speaking of scary ocean related things, Oceana is also running a Freaky Fish Contest!  Vote for your favorite deep sea goblin or ghoul and you could win tickets to an IMAX experience.