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BANGI: The government has urged palm oil millers who have ceased their milling operations due to the sharp fall in edible oil prices to resume operations immediately.
Plantation Industries and Commodities Deputy Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wee Jeck Seng said the halt in operations, which led to the millers not buying fresh fruit bunches (FFB), would affect existing stocks and have a negative impact on smallholders, Bernama reported.
“We have received complaints from planters that millers are not buying (FFB).
“This should not have happened because FFBs have a shelf life and do not last long and the income of smallholders will be affected,” he said after launching the Transfer of Technology Webinar and Exhibition (TOT) 2022.
Wee said to address the situation, the Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) – the country’s premier agency overseeing the industry – will be meeting with the millers.
“We have discussed the matter with the MPOB and it will take action to call or refer to all manufacturers for advice.
“The millers should be (more) responsible irrespective of whether (crude palm oil) prices are high or low because every business carries risks,” he said.
Malaysian crude palm oil (CPO) price saw its biggest one-month decline in more than 13 years in June, tumbling 22% to RM4,922 on Monday from a high of RM6,632.
MPOB director-general Datuk Ahmad Parveez Ghulam Kadir said the situation involved independent palm oil millers in the Peninsular Malaysia, especially those in the northern and southern regions.
According to him, if the issue is prolonged, the MPOB will take legal action against those involved and will also contact integrated palm oil producers to buy FFB to reduce the impact on the affected oil palm growers.
“We hope to resolve this problem within this week. We just received the information yesterday (Monday) and we will draft an action plan, and if necessary, we will issue a letter to all millers to take the appropriate action immediately.”
During the TOT 2022, the MPOB showcased new technologies such as oil palm-based feed pellets formulation for cattles and manufacturing of biscuits using enriched red palm oil.
The event also saw the introduction of three new services, namely Sawit Secure 2.0 Digital Management of Oil Palm Pests and Diseases, Assessment and Management of Soil Suitability for Oil Palm Plantations and Determination of Total Chloride in CPO and Secondary Oils.