by Jasmine Chin, email@example.com. Posted on September 17, 2011, SaturdayKUCHING: Oil palm – The engine of growth for not only the state but also for the country
Sarawak’s share in the oil palm industry is critical as the recent statistics from the Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) revealed that the nation’s highest fresh fruit bunch (FFB) yield was generated from the state.
In the recent statistics garnered from MPOB, the cumulative FBB yield in Malaysia for the first eight months of this year (January to August) was 12.52 tonnes per hectare (ha), an increase of 6.5 per cent as compared with 11.76 tonnes per ha for the corresponding period the previous year.
Of this, the highest percentage increase in FFB yield for the same period was recorded in Sarawak which observed an increase of 14.4 per cent from 9.2 tonnes per ha last year to reach 10.55 tonnes per ha this year.
“The boost in FFB yield in Sarawak is attributed mainly to larger matured areas reaching their peak production age. Sarawak having 33 per cent of oil palm trees in the ‘young matured’ category (three years old to six years old), covering 323,706ha is expected to achieve higher FFB yields as the palms mature,” highlighted director general of MPOB, Datuk Dr Choo Yuen May to The Borneo Post.
Overall, FFB yield in Sabah rose by nine per cent to 14.45 tonnes per ha from 13.26 tonnes per ha last year.
FFB yield of Peninsular Malaysia this year increased by 3.1 per cent to register at 12.15 tonnes per ha from 11.78 tonnes per ha last year.
This increase according to Choo was attributed to the positive impact arising from improved weather conditions since February this year, as well as recovery after two years of declining yields in 2009 and 2010.
Additionally, out of the nation’s total crude palm oil (CPO) production, Sarawak’s share had increased to 13.8 per cent or 1.67 million tonnes from 12.01 million tonnes for the first eight months of this year.
Malaysia’s CPO production stood at 16.99 million tonnes, an input of 37.2 per cent to the world’s CPO production. Out of this, Sarawak has contributed a total of 2.18 million tonnes or 12.8 per cent to the country’s production.