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KUALA LUMPUR, March 30 (Bernama) -- Creative and innovative ways in utilising technology are crucial to maintain the palm oil industry’s competitive advantage, said Council of Palm Oil Producing Countries (CPOPC) executive director Tan Sri Dr Datuk Yusof Basiron.
He said there have been various types of technological innovations that have been developed and commercialised, providing solutions to the industry such as for disease control and pest control, as well as machineries to harvest and transport fresh fruit bunches.
“In keeping with the spirit and aspirations of Malaysia’s National Transformation 2050 (TN50), disruptive technologies will be the driver of innovations across all sectors, including the palm oil sector.
“The vision and transformative pathways of TN50 is aligned with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and the targets of the Paris Agreement,” he said in his opening remarks at a webinar on “How Technology Is Elevating Sustainability in Palm Oil Industry” today.
Hence, Yusof said, industry players need to learn to adapt to these disruptive technologies in the palm oil industry and, at the same time, ensure that sustainability factors are met.
He said technological advancement is able to optimise the usage and time of manpower, logistics and materials during the upstream stage and the traceability route is easily identified within a system, which will improve sustainability.
Commercial technological advancements in the palm oil industry should attract young people, Yusof said.
“The innovation and sustainable palm oil industries offer plenty of job opportunities for many people to help grow the industry in Malaysia,” he said.
He reckoned that young people are heading into a bright future with plenty of learning opportunities in view of the current technologies in the agricultural sector.
Meanwhile, Malaysian Palm Oil Board director-general Datuk Dr Ahmad Parveez Ghulam Kadir, who was a panellist, said transformation in the oil palm industry is crucial for it to become sustainable.
This encompasses three key pillars -- People, Planet and Profit -- which intertwine among upstream, mid-stream and down-stream sectors of the industry.
On the upstream sector, he said it focuses on yield intensification which will maximise the efficient use land and return on investment, while mid-stream focuses on oil palm biomass generation whereby on average, about 100 million tonnes of oil palm biomass is generated annually.
As for downstream, Ahmad Parveez said it highlights the sustainable approach for oleochemical process whereby it focuses on downstream processing technologies, specialty chemicals and consumer products.
“Positive transformation in the whole palm oil industry ecosystem will elevate sustainability through lower management cost, higher revenue as well as biodiversity preservation,” he said.
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