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LIST OF ARTICLES

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No: 74 (May 2017) p17-24
The Red Palm Weevil, Rhynchophorus ferrugineus: Current Issues and Challenges in Malaysia
Wahizatul Afzan Azmi*; Chong Ju Lian*; Hazlina Ahamad Zakeri**; Norhayati Yusuf**; Wan Bayani Wan Omar*; Yong Kah Wai*; Ainatun Nadrah Zulkefli* and Mohd Haris Hussain*

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The Red Palm Weevil, Rhynchophorus ferrugineus: Current Issues and Challenges in Malaysia

The red palm weevil (RPW), Rhynchophorus ferrugineus is an economically important pest of palms in many parts of the world. The weevil was first reported in the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia in the early 2007, where it is now causing severe damage to coconut palms. However, in 2016, the RPW has been reported in five states – Perlis, Kedah, Pulau Pinang, Terengganu and Kelantan, with the latter being the worst-hit. The weevil has also been found in oil palm plantations of FELDA and FELCRA by using pheromone trapping, but so far there is no evidence of the oil palm trees being affected. Current method to manage the RPW in Malaysia is largely based on pheromone mass trapping. However, it is still not an effective way to reduce the infestation of the RPW as the weevil population keeps increasing drastically. Thus, urgent action with special management considerations should be taken in order to reduce the problem. Here we report the identification, life cycle, symptoms of infestation, current management tactics for the RPW, and the potential threat of RPW to oil palm industry.

Kumbang merah palma (RPW), Rhynchophorus ferrugineus adalah merupakan perosak penting pokok palma di banyak kawasan di dunia. Kehadiran kumbang ini pertama kali dilaporkan di pantai timur Semenanjung Malaysia pada awal tahun 2007, di mana kini ianya menyebabkan kerosakan yang teruk kepada pokok kelapa. Walau bagaimanapun, pada 2016, RPW telah dilaporkan melanda lima negeri - Perlis, Kedah, Pulau Pinang, Terengganu dan Kelantan, negeri terakhir yang paling teruk terkesan. Kumbang ini juga telah ditemui di ladang sawit FELDA dan FELCRA dengan menggunakan perangkap feromon, tetapi setakat ini tiada bukti menunjukkan serangan telah berlaku ke atas pokok sawit. Kaedah semasa untuk menguruskan RPW di Malaysia adalah sebahagian besarnya menggunakan perangkap feromon. Walau bagaimanapun, kaedah ini bukanlah satu kaedah yang efektif untuk mengurangkan infestasi RPW kerana populasi kumbang didapati telah bertambah secara drastik. Oleh itu, tindakan segera perlu dilakukan untuk mengurangkan masalah ini dengan mengambilkira pengurusan yang khusus. Penulisan berkaitan RPW ini merangkumi keterangan identiti, kitaran hidup, simptom serangan, taktik pengurusan semasa dan juga potensi ancamannya terhadap industri sawit.



Keyword(s): red palm weevil, Rhynchophorus ferrugineus, control management, coconut palm, oil palm.

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No: 74 (May 2017) p12-16
Bacterial Biodiversity in Oil Palm Plantation and Different Forest Ecosystems in Mineral Soil in Sarawak
Shamsilawani, A B*; Siti Ramlah, A A* and Mohd Shawal, T M*

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Bacterial Biodiversity in Oil Palm Plantation and Different Forest Ecosystems in Mineral Soil in Sarawak

Changes in the soil properties due to cultivation causes rapid changes in the microbial communities and activities in the soil. Most of this soil microbial population are sensitive to the changes in soil; therefore, some microbiological parameter such as microbial biodiversity can be used as an indicator for soil quality. By applying 16S rDNA and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE), we investigated the bacterial composition in an area planted with oil palm in mineral soil in Belaga, Sarawak. Overall Shannon-Weaver biodiversity index showed that soil bacterial biodiversity in the oil palm planted area increased slightly after clean clearing. When palms reached the age of 2.5 years, the biodiversity index increased from early planting compared to the biodiversity in the strip areas. Prevalence of minor phylum showed that with the increase of oil palm age, there was an increase in the variations of new phylum groups contributing to the diverse population of soil bacteria in the oil palm area.

Perubahan tanah akibat daripada aktiviti pertanian mengakibatkan berlakunya perubahan populasi dan aktiviti mikrob di dalam tanah. Kebanyakan mikrob tanah ini adalah sensitif kepada perubahan dalam tanah. Oleh itu, parameter seperti indek biodiversiti mikrob boleh digunakan sebagai satu penunjuk untuk mengukur kualiti tanah. Primer 16S rDNA dan kaedah ’denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis‘ (DGGE), telah digunakan bagi mengkaji komposisi bakteria di kawasan penanaman sawit dan kawasan strip biodiversiti pada tanah mineral di Belaga, Sarawak. Secara keseluruhan indek biodiversiti Shannon-Weaver menunjukkan bahawa biodiversiti bakteria di kawasan sawit meningkat sedikit selepas pembersihan kawasan tanpa kaedah pembakaran. Apabila sawit mencapai umur 2.5 tahun, indek biodiversiti meningkat berbanding penanaman awal sawit dan kawasan strip biodiversiti. Kehadiran filum minoriti menunjukkan dengan peningkatan umur sawit, variasi kumpulan filum baru juga meningkat dan seterusnya ia menyumbang kepada peningkatan kepelbagaian populasi bakteria tanah kawasan penanaman sawit berbanding strip biodiversiti.



Keyword(s): oil palm plantation, microbial biodiversity, 16S rDNA, denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis, forest ecosystem.

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No: 74 (May 2017) p7-11
Evaluation of Entomopathogenic Fungi and Chemical to Control Termite, Coptotermes curvignathus on Mature Oil Palm and Supply Seedlings on Peat
Mohamad Rosman Sulaiman*; Saharul Abillah Mohamad*; Ramle Moslim*; Zulkefli Masijan* and Siaw Ting Chuan**

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Evaluation of Entomopathogenic Fungi and Chemical to Control Termite, Coptotermes curvignathus on Mature Oil Palm and Supply Seedlings on Peat

The use of chemical insecticide, fipronil and two entomotahogenic fungi, Beauveria bassiana and Metarhizium major on termite control was evaluated. The experiment was conducted in high termite infested field with 10 year-old palm and young supply seedlings of six months after planting. Treatment on infested mature palm was conducted by spraying of product solution on the whole palm trunk and soil injection surrounding the palm bases. For young supply seedling, the palm was only treated by soil injection. For treatment with fipronil, all 8 treated palms were observed to be free from any termite activity at 3 and 6 months after treatment (MAT). However, at 9 MAT, one palm had collapsed due to severe damage in the inner trunk tissues caused by termite attack. For treatment with B. bassiana, out of 17 treated palms, no termite activity was found on 3 palms at 3 MAT, 5 palms at 6 MAT and 7 palms at 9 MAT. The number of palms which collapsed due to termite attack was only one palm, recorded at 3 MAT. For treatment with M. major, out of 10 treated palms, one palm was observed with no presence of termite activity at 3 MAT. While from 6 to 9 MAT, the number of palms with no termite infestation increased to 2 palms. Two palms treated with M. major collapsed due to severe damage of the inner trunk tissues caused by termite attack. For young supply seedlings, up to 9 MAT, only one palm treated with B. bassiana was infested by termite, while other palms were still healthy. Findings of this study showed that fipronil was the most effective, giving 100% control against termite infestation up to 9 MAT. The entomopathogenic fungus B. bassiana gave 41.18% control and M. major gave 20% control against termite infestation. All products were able to prevent infestation of termite on new supply seedling in high termite infestation areas up to 9 MAT. Possible factors that might have influenced the effectiveness of the two entomopathogenic fungi in controlling termite infestation were elaborated in detail. Further research is needed to develop biological products and delivery methods for effective control of termite on peat.

Penggunaan racun serangga kimia, fipronil dan dua kulat entomopatogenik, Beauveria bassiana dan Metarhizium major untuk kawalan anai-anai telah dikaji. Kajian telah dijalankan di kawasan pokok sawit matang berusia 10 tahun dan anak sawit sulam berumur 6 bulan selepas tanam. Rawatan pada pokok sawit matang dijalankan secara semburan larutan produk pada keseluruhan batang sawit dan suntikan tanah di sekitar pangkal pokok. Untuk anak sawit sulam, ia dirawat hanya dengan kaedah suntikan tanah. Hasil kajian mendapati rawatan fipronil berupaya mengawal kesemua 8 pokok sawit daripada serangan anaianai pada 3 dan 6 bulan selepas rawatan (BSR). Walau bagaimanapun, pada 9 BSR, satu pokok telah tumbang akibat kerosakan teruk tisu dalaman batang yang disebabkan oleh serangan anai-anai. Untuk rawatan B. bassiana, daripada 17 pokok sawit yang dirawat, tiada aktiviti anai-anai ditemui pada 3 pokok selepas 3 BSR, 5 pokok pada 6 BSR dan 7 pokok pada 9 BSR. Bilangan pokok sawit yang tumbang akibat serangan anai-anai hanya satu pokok, yang dicatatkan pada 3 BSR. Untuk rawatan kulat M. major, daripada 10 pokok sawit yang dirawat, hanya satu pokok diperhatikan tanpa aktiviti anai-anai pada 3 BSR. Manakala pada 6 BSR dan 9 BSR, bilangan pokok sawit tanpa anai-anai meningkat kepada 2 pokok. Dua sawit yang dirawat dengan M. major telah tumbang akibat kerosakan teruk tisu dalaman batang yang disebabkan oleh serangan anai-anai. Untuk anak sawit sulam, hanya satu pokok sawit yang dirawat dengan B. bassiana telah diserang oleh anaianai selepas 9 bulan rawatan. Hasil kajian ini menunjukkan bahawa fipronil merupakan rawatan yang paling berkesan, memberikan kawalan 100% terhadap serangan anai-anai sehingga 9 BSR. Kulat entomopatogenik B. bassiana memberikan kawalan 41.18% dan M. major memberikan kawalan 20% terhadap serangan anai-anai. Semua produk dapat mengawal serangan anai-anai pada anak sawit sulam sehingga 9 BSR. Faktor yang menyebabkan kedua-dua kulat entomopatogenik kurang berkesan untuk mengawal anai-anai juga dihuraikan dengan lebih lanjut. Kajian lanjut bagi membangunkan produk biologi serta kaedah penggunaan di ladang untuk anai-anai perlu dijalankan.



Keyword(s): entomopathogenic fungi, Coptotermes curvignathus, fipronil, oil palm.

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No: 74 (May 2017) p1-6
The Impact of El Niño and La Niña on Malaysian Palm Oil Industry
Nur Nadia Kamil* and Syuhadatul Fatimah Omar*

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The Impact of El Niño and La Niña on Malaysian Palm Oil Industry

El Niño and La Niña are two complex weather patterns that result from variations in the ocean temperatures of the equatorial Pacific. Being close to the equatorial Pacific, the occurrence of the socalled El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) events has a notable impact on Malaysian weather. The wind circulation of the ENSO influences the precipitation in Malaysia. The extreme changes in rainfall level either below or above the average does significantly affect the productivity of the Malaysian main agriculture commodity namely palm oil. The reduction in rainfall amount creates stress during the development of oil palm fruit bunches and hence reduces the FFB yield of the palms. On the other hand, higher than average rainfall also has a negative effect on the oil palms and reduces the oil production. The occurrence of these two events is seen to affect CPO prices. However, our analysis suggested that there was no significant relationship between rainfall and CPO prices, but CPO production does.

El Niño dan La Niña adalah dua corak cuaca yang kompleks disebabkan oleh perubahan suhu lautan Pasifik di khatulistiwa. Terletak hampir dengan khatulistiwa lautan Pasifik, corak cuaca di Malaysia dipengaruhi oleh peristiwa yang dikenali sebagai El Niño dan Ayunan Selatan (ENSO). Peredaran angin disebabkan oleh kejadian ENSO mempengaruhi taburan hujan di Malaysia. Perubahan dalam taburan hujan yang melampau sama ada di bawah atau di atas paras purata taburan hujan memberi kesan ketara kepada produktiviti komoditi pertanian utama Malaysia iaitu minyak sawit. Pengurangan jumlah hujan mewujudkan tekanan semasa terhadap proses perkembangan tandan buah sawit dan dengan itu mengurangkan hasil buah tandan segar (BTS). Sebaliknya, hujan yang lebih tinggi daripada purata juga mempunyai kesan negatif ke atas tanaman sawit dan mengurangkan pengeluaran minyak. Secara amnya, taburan hujan yang terlalu rendah dan terlalu tinggi dilihat memberi kesan kepada pergerakan harga minyak sawit mentah (CPO). Walau bagaimanapun, analisis kami mencadangkan bahawa tidak terdapat hubungan yang signifikan di antara taburan hujan dan pergerakan harga minyak sawit mentah, tetapi perubahan dalam taburan hujan didapati mempengaruhi kadar pengeluaran CPO.



Keyword(s): El Niño, La Niña, ENSO, FFB yield, CPO prices

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No: 73 (November 2016) p13-14
MPOB News
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MPOB News

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No: 73 (November 2016) p10-12
Identification of Etiolated Palms for Thinning via IFSAR
Hardi Hadiali*; Siti Nuruljannah A Majid**; Ganesan Nallan* and Lee Teck Fah±

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Identification of Etiolated Palms for Thinning via IFSAR

Remote Sensing (RS) technology has come a long way in assisting the oil palm plantations to increase productivity while simplifying tedious and laborious field work. Utilising the highly accurate RS data like Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (IFSAR) is one of those ways. In this paper, the IFSAR data is used to assist in the identification of etiolated areas on desktop computer level before proceeding to the field for verification. Identification of etiolated palms for thinning is tedious and can be inaccurate if the personnel assigned to the task are not experienced enough. The complexity of selecting the etiolated palms to be thinned is further compounded if the area of interest is on a hilly terrain. Selection and thinning of etiolated palms on hilly terrain is not bounded by any system compared to the hexagonal “1 in 7 ’’ method which is generally adopted in oil palms planted on flat terrain. The IFSAR image enables the GIS team to identify areas where palms are closely planted via the desktop. A single GIS operator can cover up to 200 to 250 hectares per day for this task. This information is then translated in map formats into mobile GPS devices such as the Android Androzic application on smartphones or tablets. With this information, the operation team can zoom into the close planting areas where etiolation will most likely happen. By utilising this extra information, the team can save time and does not have to cover an entire block to identify the etiolated areas. On the ground, the team can then verify and mark out the etiolated palms for thinning. Based on experience, the verification on the ground is crucial as only up to 20% of the palms selected are suitable for thinning. The utilisation of such technology is helpful as it improves productivity and accuracy of the palms selected for thinning.

Teknologi Penderiaan Jauh (PJ) telah lama digunakan bagi membantu ladang-ladang sawit untuk meningkatkan produktiviti dan juga memudahkan kerja lapangan yang agak rumit dan payah. Salah satu cara adalah dengan menggunakan data PJ yang jitu seperti Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (IFSAR). Dalam artikel ini, data IFSAR telah digunakan untuk membantu dalam mengenalpasti kawasan sawit beretiolasi dengan menggunakan komputer sebelum membuat pengesahan di lapangan. Pengenalpastian pokok sawit etiolasi untuk penjarangan adalah agak rumit dan boleh menjadi tidak tepat jika pegawai yang ditugaskan tidak berpengalaman. Tugas ini menjadi lebih rumit di kawasan berbukit. Pemilihan dan penjarangan pokok sawit etiolasi di kawasan berbukit tidak terikat dengan mana-mana sistem, berbanding dengan kaedah heksagon “1 dalam 7‘’ yang biasanya diterima pakai di kawasan yang rata. Imej IFSAR membolehkan pasukan GIS untuk mengenalpasti kawasan di mana pokok sawit yang ditanam rapat melalui komputer. Seorang pengendali GIS boleh menjalankan tugas ini meliputi sehingga 200 hingga 250 hektar sehari. Maklumat ini kemudian diterjemahkan dalam format peta ke dalam peranti GPS mudah alih seperti aplikasi Android Androzic pada telefon pintar atau tablet. Dengan maklumat ini juga, pasukan operasi boleh memberi tumpuan kepada kawasan penanaman rapat di mana kemungkinan besar akan berlaku etiolasi. Maklumat tambahan ini membolehkan petugas menjimatkan masa kerana tidak perlu meneliti keseluruhan blok untuk mengenalpasti kawasan sawit beretiolasi. Mereka kemudiannya boleh mengesahkan dan menandakan pokok sawit etiolasi di lapangan untuk penjarangan. Berdasarkan pengalaman, pengesahan di lapangan adalah penting kerana hanya 20% sahaja daripada pokok sawit yang dipilih adalah sesuai untuk penjarangan. Penggunaan teknologi ini dapat membantu untuk meningkatkan produktiviti dan pemilihan tepat pokok sawit untuk penjarangan.



Keyword(s): Remote Sensing, oil palm, productivity, Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar, etiolated palms, thinning, map formats

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No: 73 (November 2016) p6-9
Reduced Fertiliser Rounds Trial: Comparison between Compound and Mixture Fertilisers in High Rainfall Environment
Lee Teck Fah*; Alexander Aban**; Phor Kok Beng± and Haniff Salleh**

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Reduced Fertiliser Rounds Trial: Comparison between Compound and Mixture Fertilisers in High Rainfall Environment

The choice of fertiliser recommended and applied in the oil palm estates has significant impact on the production of fresh fruit bunches (FFB). While it has been established that more application rounds at lower dosages is more efficient for nutrient uptake for the oil palms, it is not practical on the ground for the planters to be recommended with 7 to 8 rounds of fertiliser application annually. In most parts of Sabah where annual rainfall averages between 3500 mm to 4000 mm, it is even more challenging for estates to have high number of application rounds due to the shorter window (about 8 months) for fertiliser application and labour shortage constraints. Hence, incomplete fertiliser application can be detrimental to the oil palm yields in the long term. In this trial, Genting Plantations Berhad (GENP) evaluated a compound fertiliser regime at 4 application rounds against two mixture fertiliser regimes at 5 and 6 application rounds respectively. The trial started in 2011 and was conducted on 1998 planting with undulating to rolling terrain. Fertiliser applied at the trial site is based on best oil palm management practices and is fully supervised by the estate and research team. In terms of FFB yield, there is no significant difference between the compound fertiliser treatment and best performing mixture treatment (6 rounds application) after 48 months. No significant difference was also observed in the leaf nutrient levels between the compound and mixture fertiliser treatments. Comparison between the two mixture fertiliser treatments which were applied at 5 and 6 rounds respectively reaffirms previous research findings that the increase in frequency of application improves the fertiliser uptake efficiency as FFB yield for the mixture fertiliser treatment with 6 rounds application was 8% higher than the mixture fertilizer treatment with 5 rounds application. Between these two treatments, average bunch weight (ABW) was higher by 6% and average bunch number was higher by 2%. Application of compound fertilizers at a reduced fertiliser rounds regime can produce similar FFB yields to mixture fertiliser regimes. The usage of compound fertilisers can address the issue of incomplete fertiliser application in areas of high rainfall which usually has less good months for fertiliser application.

Pilihan baja yang betul dan diaplikasi mengikut pengesyoran di ladang sawit mempunyai kesan yang signifikan ke atas hasil buah tandan segar (BTS). Walaupun telah diketahui bahawa lebih kerap pusingan pembajaan dengan dos yang lebih rendah membolehkan pokok sawit mengambil nutrien dengan lebih cekap, tetapi ianya tidak praktikal kepada pekebun untuk melakukan 7-8 pusingan pembajaan setiap tahun. Purata hujan tahunan antara 3500 mm hingga 4000 mm di kebanyakan tempat di Sabah, adalah cabaran bagi ladang-ladang untuk mempunyai bilangan pusingan pembajaan yang tinggi kerana kekangan masa aplikasi yang lebih pendek (kira-kira 8 bulan) dan juga kekurangan tenaga kerja. Oleh itu, aplikasi baja yang tidak lengkap boleh menjejaskan hasil sawit dalam jangka masa panjang. Dalam kajian ini, Genting Plantations Berhad (GENP) menilai rejim baja sebatian pada 4 pusingan pembajaan terhadap dua rejim baja campuran masing-masing pada 5 dan 6 pusingan pembajaan. Kajian bermula pada tahun 2011 dan telah dijalankan keatas pokok yang ditanam pada tahun 1998 di kawasan mukabumi tidak rata dan beralun. Pembajaan yang dilakukan berdasarkan kepada amalan pengurusan sawit terbaik dan diselia sepenuhnya oleh ladang tersebut dan sekumpulan penyelidik. Selepas 48 bulan, tiada perbezaan signifikan pada hasil BTS di antara rawatan baja sebatian dan baja campuran (6 pusingan pembajaan). Tiada perbezaan yang signifikan juga diperhatikan pada kandungan nutrien daun antara pokok yang dirawat dengan rawatan baja sebatian dan campuran. Perbandingan antara kedua-dua rawatan baja campuran yang telah digunakan masing-masing pada 5 dan 6 pusingan pembajaan menyokong penemuan penyelidikan sebelum ini bahawa aplikasi baja yang lebih kerap akan meningkatkan kecekapan pengambilan baja dan akan meningkatkan hasil BTS. Rawatan baja campuran dengan 6 pusingan pembajaan memperolehi hasil TBS 8% lebih tinggi daripada rawatan 5 pusingan pembajaan. Manakala, berat dan bilangan tandan adalah masing-masing 6% dan 2% lebih tinggi. Penggunaan baja sebatian dengan rejim pusingan pembajaan yang dikurangkan boleh memberikan hasil BTS yang sama dengan rejim baja campuran. Dengan itu penggunaan baja sebatian boleh menangani isu aplikasi baja yang tidak lengkap di kawasan yang menerima hujan yang tinggi yang biasanya mempunyai masa yang terhad untuk pembajaan.



Keyword(s): fertiliser, oil palm, FFB, application rounds, nutrient uptake, rainfall

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No: 73 (November 2016) p1-5
Quality Testing Laboratory for the Oil Palm Motorised Cutter
Abdul Razak Jelani*; Mohd Ikmal Hafizi Azaman*; Mohd Rizal Ahmad*; Zahara Mohamed*; Syahmin Sukawai*; Asyraf Aziz*; Asyraf Aduka*; Yosri Gono* and Abd Rahim Shuib*

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Abstract


Quality Testing Laboratory for the Oil Palm Motorised Cutter

Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) has developed a hand-held motorised harvesting tool called Cantas for fresh fruit bunches (FFB) harvesting. Several local and foreign companies have been licensed to manufacture and market the technology. It is crucial that the machine complies with the industry standard in terms of performance, durability and safety. In fulfilling this, MPOB has established a Quality Testing Laboratory to carry out vigorous quality and safety tests. These include physical test, engine’s performance, fatigue, functional, vibration and drop tests. Upon successful completion of the tests, manufacturers are awarded the certificate of quality. Services offered by the Quality Testing Laboratory benefits manufacturers of oil palm motorised cutter to ensure the products meet the industry standards for performance, durability and safety.

Lembaga Minyak Sawit Malaysia (MPOB) telah membangunkan alat penuaian bermotor yang dipanggil Cantas untuk menuai buah tandan segar (BTS). Beberapa syarikat tempatan dan juga asing telah mempunyai lesen untuk mengeluar dan memasarkan teknologi ini. Mesin ini perlu mematuhi piawaian industri dari segi prestasi, ketahanan dan keselamatan. Untuk memenuhi piawaian ini, MPOB telah menubuhkan Makmal Ujian Kualiti untuk menjalankan ujian kualiti dan keselamatan. Ini termasuk ujian fizikal, prestasi enjin, kelesuan, fungsi, getaran dan ujian kejatuhan. Pengeluar akan dianugerahkan sijil kualiti setelah berjaya melalui ujian tersebut. Perkhidmatan yang ditawarkan oleh Makmal Ujian Kualiti memberi manfaat kepada pengeluar alat penuaian bermotor bagi memastikan produk tersebut memenuhi piawaian industri untuk prestasi, ketahanan dan keselamatan.



Keyword(s): motorised harvesting tool / cutter, FFB, industry standard, quality testing laboratory, performance

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No: 72 (May 2016) p38-39
MPOB News
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MPOB News

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No: 72 (May 2016) p32-37
Harvesting Practices for Maximum Yield in Oil Palm: Results from a Re-Assessment at IJM Plantations, Sabah
Mohanaraj, S N* and Donough, C R**

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Harvesting Practices for Maximum Yield in Oil Palm: Results from a Re-Assessment at IJM Plantations, Sabah

Recoverable yield of fresh fruit bunches (FFB), palm oil (PO, or oil) and palm kernel (PK, or kernel) are determined during harvesting. After harvest, losses occur as harvested FFB lose weight with time and loose fruits (LF) of harvested bunches are not all collected; and oil quality starts to deteriorate as free fatty acid (FFA) content rises. The quantum of loss and the degree of oil quality deterioration depend on the efficiency of harvesting practices which must balance maximum oil yield and acceptable oil quality. Harvesting involves teams of workers visiting blocks of palms at regular intervals to cut and recover ripe bunches. Field managers determine the minimum ripeness standard and manage the harvesting interval, the combination of both factors determines the overall ripeness composition of the harvested crop. In practice, the minimum ripeness standard (MRS) may be difficult to enforce but with adequate resources the harvesting interval (HI) can be controlled. Bunch analysis (BA) shows that oil content of harvested bunches vary greatly, with a poor relation to the number of LF per bunch, thus a low MRS can be implemented without much impact on the potential oil extraction rate (OER) of the harvested crop. High FFB yield is a prerequisite for high oil yield but not necessarily high OER; on the other hand, high OER does not necessarily mean high oil yield. The definition of ‘under-ripe’ bunches used in crop grading should be consistent with field practice, i.e. the adopted MRS, to avoid mismatch between plantations and mills.

Hasil yang diperolehi dari buah tandan segar (BTS), minyak sawit (PO, atau minyak) dan isirong sawit (PK, atau isirong) ditentukan oleh penuaian. Semasa penuaian, kerugian boleh berlaku apabila berat BTS yang dituai akan berkurangan dengan peredaran masa dan tidak semua buah relai (LF) dikumpulkan; dan kualiti minyak mula merosot apabila kandungan asid bebas lemak (FFA) meningkat. Kuantum kerugian dan tahap kemerosotan kualiti minyak bergantung pada kecekapan amalan penuaian yang mesti mengimbangi antara memaksimumkan hasil minyak dan kualiti minyak yang boleh diterima. Penuaian melibatkan sekumpulan pekerja yang memasuki ladang mengikut jadual yang ditetapkan untuk memotong dan menuai tandan masak. Pengurus ladang menentukan piawai minimum kematangan tandan (MRS) dan kekerapan menuai, gabungan kedua-dua faktor tersebut menentukan komposisi kematangan keseluruhan tandan yang dituai. Kebiasaannya, piawai minimum kematangan tandan mungkin sukar untuk dikuatkuasakan tetapi dengan sumber yang mencukupi, selangan tuaian (HI) boleh dikawal. Analisis tandan (BA) menunjukkan bahawa kandungan minyak amat berbeza antara tandan yang dituai, serta perkaitan yang lemah dengan bilangan buah relai setiap tandan. Oleh itu, MRS yang rendah boleh diamalkan tanpa memberi kesan yang ketara terhadap potensi kadar perahan minyak (OER). Hasil BTS tinggi diperlukan untuk mengeluarkan hasil minyak yang tinggi tetapi tidak semestinya dapat memperolehi OER yang tinggi; sebaliknya, kadar OER yang tinggi tidak bermakna hasil minyak yang tinggi. Takrif tandan ‘kurang-masak’ yang digunakan dalam penggredan tandan perlu selaras dengan amalan ladang, iaitu penggunaan MRS, untuk mengelakkan ketidaksetaraan antara ladang dan kilang.



Keyword(s): oil palm FFB yield, oil quality, harvesting practices, bunch analysis, oil extraction rate

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