Coconut, which has been widely cultivated by people, was eyed by two companies, namely Salim Group and Unilever. The two companies have now developed superior coconut seedlings in North Sulawesi. Novarianto Hengky, Research Specialist of Plantation Research center, stated his.
Unilever developed coconut because it has difficulty in getting coconut sugar for say sauce industry according to the desired quality specifications.
Today, with he increasing number of large companies entering the soy sauce industry, the demand for brown sugar sauce that meets industry quality standards in increasing. The problem is that brown sugar made by artisans is relatively fixed.
Increase in demand is not followed by production increase. Many people are no longer interested in becoming palm tree tappers. Every year it is estimated that 70 tappers died or injured because of falling from the height of a coconut tree.
Therefore, now Unilever is concentrating on efforts to produce hybrid coconut whose fruit/sap production is high and its stem is short. With a relatively short hybrid coconut palm trees, there is no need to climb, and tapping is not too difficult.
Meanwhile, Salim is concentrating on coconuts with oil contents for the development of downstream industries. Currently, products derived from coconut oil are needed by the food & beverage, pharmaceutical, and chemical industries. These products are of high economic value so that Salim group is dealing with research very seriously.
All coconut stakeholders who are members of the Indonesian Coconut Board have determined to realize Coconut-Based Sustainable Bioindustry Agriculture Development. The Indonesian Coconut Board members consist of government, researchers, academicians, business both farmers and processing industry, and traders.
Coconut bioindustry is target to produce a variety of high-value, environmentally friendly, and sustainable coconut products by applying various components superior technology. In the upstream, farmers’ coconut plantations to increase income need a horizontal diversification by planting intercropped plants, namely coffee, cocoa, areca nut, and coconut & livestock integration. In this way, income and welfare of farmers will increase.
Coconut bioindustry development should proper coconut farmers through optimal product diversification, meeting the needs of consumers, a balanced benefit from upstream to downstream, price stability, and support environmental, monetary & fiscal policies.
Currently, coconut policy expected from the government which is urgent to be implemented immediately is acceleration of coconut plant rejuvenation with superior seeds, development of high value-added coconut industry and marketing of the products.
Currently, like other agricultural commodities, problems faced by farmers are declining copra prices. Without the development of coconut bioindustry, the coconut industry could die. Hence, the development of the coconut bioindustry will be implemented in a short time.
Coconut, until today, is one of the commodities that have an important role in the commodities that have an important role in the life of Indonesia society. All parts of this plant can be used to meet economic, social and cultural needs.
One of the problems of coconut at the farm level is low coconut productivity at the farm level, which is only 1.2 tons of copra per hectare/year. This is because of not using superior seeds and non-optimal application of farming techniques by farmers. The potential for superior coconut production can reach 3-4 tons of copra per hectare/year.
So, currently the efforts that are continuously made by the Coconut must have high oil content, i.e. about 60% and 8% protein % to be used as industrial raw material.
With oil and protein content according to standard, it can be used as an industrial raw material, coconut milk, and desiccated coconut. Coconut husk and shell should be relatively good for car seats, mattresses and others. Coconut shell is used in activated charcoal industry, while coconut water is used for soft drink and nata de coco industries. (E)
Business News - May 27, 2015