POIC Sabah Sdn Bhd chief executive officer Datuk Dr Pang Teck Wai traveled to China this week to educate participants in a commodities sourcing seminar on the traditional and alternative benefits of palm oil in the world’s largest market for imported palm oil. The event, organized in conjunction with the Associated Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Malaysia (ACCCIM) and the Malaysia-China Chamber of Commerce provided the Malaysian company with an opportunity to promote recent developments in commercialization of palm oil by-products.
“Empty fruit bunches can be processed into long fibre for mattress stuffing, fuel briquettes and fertilizers in cake or pellet form, paper pulp and paper products, composite fibre boards and other products,” Bernama reported Datuk Wai as saying in the seminar.
China imported more than 3.4 million tonnes of palm oil in 2010, more than 1 million more tonnes than Pakistan, Malaysia’s next largest market. And with more than six million tonnes of empty fruit bunches left over after processing annually in Malaysia, downstream products represent a significant opportunity for all participants in the palm oil industry, from smallholder producers and oil mills looking to increase the value of the oil palm.
Meanwhile, efforts to find alternative uses for palm oil by-products demonstrate the innovation being employed by the sector, and that companies have yet to fully realize the full potential of the oil palm. Earlier this year, Bernama reported that the Malaysian Palm Oil Board holds the highest commercialisation rate “of 30.1 per cent, or 143 technologies, with an estimated RM2.05 billion in market value of the products.”
Innovation has always been a driving force behind the Malaysian palm oil industry, and continuing this innovation, as called for in the National Key Economic Areas (NKEA), is a key priority for Malaysia.