MUAR (Aug 9): The palm oil price, which stands at RM2,800 per tonne currently, provides opportunities for the industry and oil palm planters to generate higher revenue from the sale of their products.
Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Dr Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali said the increase in the commodity price had boosted the country’s palm oil exports which recorded a 6% rise in the January to June 2020 period and contributed an export value worth RM22.57 billion.
“It’s interesting [to note] that the price is increasing probably due to the occurrence of the Covid-19 pandemic. Malaysia still produces palm oil and there are countries facing problems in production, and this causes an increase in demand and pushes up the price like what is happening now … this benefits us,” he told reporters after officiating the Jom MSPO (Malaysian Sustainable Palm Oil) Programme at the Pagoh Education Hub Convention Centre here.Advertisement
Even though faced with challenges brought on by the pandemic, the government’s strategy of giving relaxation and permission had enabled oil palm planters to go to their plantations, harvest fresh fruit bunches and operate factories even at the minimum capacity initially during the movement control order (MCO) period, he said.
Also present were Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) director-general Dr Ahmad Parveez Ghulam Kadir and Malaysian Palm Oil Certification Council chairman Muhtar Suhaili.
Mohd Khairuddin said various efforts are being undertaken by his ministry and the MPOB to increase the participation of palm smallholders through the Sustainable Palm Oil Clusters (SPOCs) nationwide to implement MSPO certification.
To date, all 162 SPOCs in the country involving 63,480 individual smallholders have obtained MSPO certification, spanning 237,876 hectares (24.12%), while 231,576 organised smallholders managed under agencies of the federal and state governments covering 679,075 hectares (99.64%) have also received the certification.
“The percentage of individual smallholders who have not obtained MSPO certification is small because not all smallholders have registered their plantation operations — some have switched to other crops and some are not active in harvesting their plantations.
“Secondly, the awareness that we must produce palm oil in a sustainable manner, and thirdly, we must get the message across to smallholders, via campaigns, whereby we ensure that our palm oil meets that standard certified globally, so that there’s no more issues regarding sustainability,” he added.
To date in Johor, all 43 SPOCs have obtained MSPO certification, involving 19,202 smallholders spanning 49,629.37 hectares of oil palm plantations.
Source : The Edge Markets