MALAYSIA is working towards a national average crude palm oil fresh fruit bunch (FFB) output of 35 tonnes per hectare by 2020 from the current production of 20.2 tonnes per hectare.
Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities Tan Sri Bernard Dompok said there were several plantation companies and smallholders who managed to reap an average FFB harvest of above 30 tonnes per hectare,” he said at the opening of a one-day seminar on “Reach and Teach Friends of the Industry: Challenges and Opportunities in 2010” in Subang today.
He said the government has funded a study to understand the characteristics of the palm oil genome as an enhancement measure towards producing better planting materials.
In addition, he said the government provided incentives, in the form of rebates to clonal laboratories, a RM200 million allocation to fell old trees and a RM100 million replanting grant for smallholders.
Besides, he said a majority of smallholders were producing below the national average.
“Currently 540,000 hectares of land is planted with oil palm and are managed by independent smallholders, who accounts for 11.6 per cent of the total planted area,” he explained.
He said the sector was important in increasing national productivity and reducing rural poverty.
Source : Business Times