Plantation Sector Urged to Use Biomass-Based Fertilisers

THE plantation sector is encouraged to use biomass-based fertilisers as an option to reduce production cost, Deputy Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Hamzah Zainudin said yesterday.

Fertilisers accounted for more than 50 per cent of the total cost, he said at the opening of the Second International Conference on Oil Palm Biomass in Kuala Lumpur.

“In this context, the efforts include enhancing R&D (research and development) on biocomposting to produce biofertilisers to ensure that oil palm trees are provided with optimal nutrients,” Hamzah said.

“As such, full utilisation of biomass will not only provide more income but will also contribute towards zero carbon emission and zero waste,” he said.

The text of his speech text was read by the ministry’s secretary-general Datuk Wira Ismail Saleh.

According to Hamzah, about 10 per cent of the oil palm trees is palm oil while about 90 per cent is in the form of oil palm biomass which is yet to be fully exploited.

“These include among others empty fruit bunches, palm fibres, palm trunks, palm fronds and palm oil mill effluents,” he said.

In 2009, the oil palm industry generated an estimated 80 million tonnes of biomass. – Bernama

Source : Business Times

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