Nothing Wasted! Oil Palm Midribs and Sticks Go International

JAKARTA – The national businessmen network (JapNas), which groups mostly young business players, see the potential of oil palm midribs and sticks to be developed as a new industry. They have targeted that the two wastes can be developed to have higher economic values.

JapNas Riau Office Chairman Arif Eka Saputra said recentlythat until now the oil palm midribs and sticks are still considered as wastes. But in fact, the wastes are abundant in Riau province as it is the largest palm oil producing region in Indonesia with a total acreage of 4.02 million hectares.

In other regions, the oil palm midribs and sticks have been developed as products with higher economic values  that are already exported. “Why we could not do such creative and innovative development in Riau?,” Arif said after the inauguration of JapNas Riau executive board in Pekanbaru last week, 25 March 2021.

JapNas Riau Deputy Chairman Victor Yonathan pointed out that in terms of midribs there are at least 1.1 billion of oil palm midribs available in Riau province for every six month. “In every six months there are at least three midribs pruned from every oil palm tree. From every midrib one kg sticks can be taken. That means there are more than one million tons of sticks that can be utilized,” said Viktor.

Viktor said that currently the sticks have been utilized. “It has been exported to Pakistan,” he said without elaborating the local products made from the sticks.

“Some people in Indragiri Hulu region have also utilized the sticks. Two local companies could procure up to 17 tons of sticks with the price of Rp2,000 per kilogram. They export their stick products to Pakistan,” he said.

According to him, the oil palm midribs can be used to produce a variety of furniture products. “But it needs some time for the process of drying and cleaning to reveal its good texture. “Actually, the oil palm trees are also very potential as the material to produce furniture. But now we’ll only focus on these two materials,” he said.

Riau Deputy Governor Edy Natar Nasution is optimistic that JapNas is able to creatively respond to the modern challenges, including the preparation of human resources for innovations.

“As an organization of businessmen, Japnas should be able to creatively respond to the current global challenges. Regarding the challenges, one thing that should be done by Japnas is prepare the professional and quality human resources in order to have higher competitiveness and able to innovate as the vanguard of Indonesia’s national economy,” Edy Natar said. (*)

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