Palm oil is a economic boon to some east Asian, west African and Central American countries. It's considered by some a "green" biofuel, but its production is also blamed for deforestation and human rights abuses, according to the United Nations. I hadn't seen the interesting texture of the palms before I noticed this shot from Reuters.
Workers gather oil palm fruits at a factory in Sepang outside Kuala Lumpur April 29, 2009. Malaysian crude palm oil futures lost 1.7 per cent to hit a one-week low today as investors cut long positions ahead of the long weekend, adding to earlier losses that were tied to fears of swine flu spreading.