Kampar, 2 October 2019 – Following the signing of a co-operation agreement in February 2019 between KUD Makmur Lestari, PT BRI Agroniaga, Tbk and BPDP-KS, Sinar Mas Agribusiness and Food through its subsidiary operating in the Riau region, PT Ramajaya Pramukti held a prime replanting to rejuvenate smallholder oil palm plantations. This rejuvenation programme grants a total of over 8 billion rupiah from BPDP-KS for KUD farmers.
This palm rejuvenation programme will be carried out in stages from 2019 to 2027 for the entire territory of Indonesia. The first phase of rejuvenation was carried out in the plasma plantation of KUD Makmur Lestari members in Kenantan Village, Tapung, Kampar District with an area of 322 hectares (145 farmers) out of a total ± 32,000 hectares of companymanaged plasma plantations in Riau.
The CEO of Sinar Mas Agribusiness and Food Plantation in the Riau region, Franciscus Costan, stated that the challenges faced by plasma farmers are having old oil palm trees that have grown too tall, reducing productivity and incurring higher harvest costs. “By replanting oil palm plantations through good agronomic practices, we can help farmers increase their productivity without opening the new land. They can also work based on the standard labour ratio and get wages according to applicable regulations. In addition, plasma farmers also get the opportunity to obtain ISPO certification which is very important as a mandatory standard for governance of oil palm plantations,” he explained.
The replanting programme is one of the company’s commitments to supporting a successful and sustainable palm oil industry. The success of the farmers is the success of the company, and smallholders will reap benefits if they join the programme. Especially since the current Crude Palm Oil prices are relatively low, they can minimise the loss of income if they are rejuvenating oil palm plantations right now. After replanting, these farmers will experience higher productivity because of the better seeds and support from Sinar Mas Agribusiness and Food technical experts. “Farmers do not need to hesitate to join this replanting programme, because the quicker they join, the faster they can reap the benefits,” said Franciscus Costan.
Kampar Regent Catur Sugeng Susanto welcomed the first planting of rejuvenation programme as an effort to keep palm oil as a national strategic commodity in a sustainable manner. “We strongly support the implementation of this programme and of course the support of private companies as farmers’ partners is very important. This programme can improve the knowledge and expertise of farmers in oil palm cultivation practices and improve their welfare,” he said.
Meanwhile, plasma farmers and KUD Makmur Lestari Chairman Sudirman explained that oil palm is the key economic sector for farmers. “Plantation rejuvenation requires a large amount of funds. Grant funds from BPDP-KS for this programme are very helpful for farmers, especially KUD members. This is inseparable from the role of the company as a strategic business partner that facilitates and assists the submission process to get the grant funds,” Sudirman explained.
Franciscus Costan also emphasised, “The company is ready to support the oil palm plantation rejuvenation programme for plantations owned by smallholders and independent farmers, to increase the productivity of oil palm plantations and the welfare of farmers and to be continue our efforts in protecting the environment.”
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Media Team Sinar Mas Agribusiness and Food
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