MPOB commercialisation of palm oil technologies hits RM3b

The Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) said in the upstream sector, technologies and inventions are aimed at improving oil palm yields further. — AFP pic
The Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) said in the upstream sector, technologies and inventions are aimed at improving oil palm yields further. — AFP pic

KUALA LUMPUR, May 1 — About 30.4 per cent of the Malaysian palm oil technologies has so far been commercialised with a market value of RM3 billion, benefiting the industry in all sectors.

The Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) said in the upstream sector, technologies and inventions are aimed at improving oil palm yields further.

“These include beneficial plants and fogging formulation for bagworm control and rotting fungi to accelerate biodegradation of oil palm trunks, as well as bio-fertilisers for treatment in controlling the diseases of oil palm.

“The MPOB can be proud of its technological innovation breakthroughs when it successfully invented and launched 667 technologies encompassing all sectors in the oil palm industry over the past 20 years,” MPOB director-general Ahmad Parveez Ghulam Kadir said in a statement in conjunction with the board’s 20th anniversary celebration in delivering breakthrough solutions.

Established on May 1, 2000 through the merger of the Palm Oil Research Institute of Malaysia (Porim) and the Palm Oil Registration and Licensing Authority (Porla), the MPOB has achieved innumerable successes throughout its 20-year journey to become an authority in the oil palm industry.

The MPOB’s invention of mechanisation and its adoption in the plantation operations for harvesting, collecting loose fruit and in-field transportation have improved worker productivity and plantation management efficiency.

Meanwhile, advances in breeding and biotechnology research have developed oil palm planting materials, namely the PS1 to PS13 series through its vast collection of mother palms.

They possess different traits such as high yield, dwarf, long stalk and richness in Vitamin E tocotrienol.

Another breakthrough solution is its genome programme which can increase yields through the early selection of high yielding planting materials, as well as reducing the contamination of lower-yielding planting materials of germinated seeds and oil palm seedlings.

Biotechnology techniques such as tissue culture, molecular screening methods, as well as enabling technologies which include sequencing, genomics selection and even genetic engineering enable the increase of production towards oil palm’s theoretical yield of 18 tonnes per hectare per year.

The MPOB made another significant achievement when it became the first organisation to sequence gene-rich region of oil palm in 2005.

The breakthrough was the first catalyst to eventually sequence the oil palm genome, which led to its decoding in 2009.

“This allows the identification of genes influencing important agronomic traits in oil palm. Conversion of these discoveries into molecular diagnostic assays will help improve the efficiency of oil palm breeding,” added Ahmad. — Bernama

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