Remember The Lorax? It’s the most pressingly political of Dr. Seuss’s magical tales, dealing with deforestation and devastation. In the end there’s nothing left but a single seed. Kids understand instinctively that this is a terrible situation to be avoided at all costs, but sometimes enterprises in a capitalist system — despite their need to prosper in perpetuity — grow shortsighted when it comes to sustainability. The pressures of today’s market make it understandably difficult for them to consider potentially unhappy consequences of their current reaping — if unmatched by adequate sowing.
According to French ecology minster Ségolène Royal, the Italian company that makes Nutella — the beloved chocolate hazelnut spread — is one of those enterprises. Royal essentially says Nutella, which relies on oil palms, has created an environmental imbalance and massive deforestion — as in Seuss’s grim tale. Nutella is the equivalent of Dr. Seuss’s “thneeds, which everyone everyone everyone needs,” according to Royal. She’s calling for citizens to stop eating Nutella.