Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Palm oil yields up as crop matures

Palm oil yields up as crop matures

Tycoon Mong Reththy is head of Mong Reththy Group, Cambodia's only active palm oil producer.
Tycoon Mong Reththy is head of Mong Reththy Group, Cambodia's only active palm oil producer. Heng Chivoan

Palm oil yields up as crop matures

Export of crude palm oil from Mong Reththy Group, the Kingdom’s only active producer, doubled during the first half of the year despite prices showing no indication of improving, a company executive said yesterday.

Mong Reththa, vice chairman of the board of directors at Mong Reththy Investment Cambodia Palm Oil, said the group subsidiary exported 13,000 tonnes of crude palm oil during the first six months of 2016, a 116 per cent increase compared to the same period one year earlier. The value of the exported product reached $7.5 million in the first half of the year, compared to $3.5 million one year earlier.

Reththa attributed the increase in export volume to the expansion of the company’s harvest area as more trees reached productive age, and to higher yields from maturing trees.

“We had more mature trees to harvest this year that can provide a higher yield,” he said. “The price is still not good, however. Even with our export volume increasing we don’t make a good profit on it.”

According to Reththa, the international price of crude palm oil has remained flat for the past year and currently stands at about $600 per tonne, or about 25 per cent below 2013 prices.

Mong Reththy Investment Cambodia Palm Oil has planted oil palm trees on 16,150 hectares, of which more than 8,000 hectares have reached a productive age. The crude palm oil from the company’s plantation is primarily exported to Malaysia, China, South Korea and the EU.

At least two other companies in Cambodia operate commercial oil palm plantations, though neither have reported completing their first harvest. One of these, Virtus Green Plantations (Cambodia), has planted oil palms on its 6,700-hectare economic land concession (ELC) in Kampot province.

According to the company’s website, Virtus planted a total of 800 hectares of oil palm as of the end of 2014. Oil palms typically begin to produce three to four years after planting, and enjoy peak production from about seven to 18 years.

Khan Samban, director of the department of industrial crops at the Ministry of Agriculture, said the expansion of oil palm cultivation was a positive move for the country as the crop is labour-intensive. “Expansion of palm oil plantations will create jobs for rural people and help to reduce migration,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Body of woman killed in Bangkok returns

    The Cambodian embassy in Thailand is working to repatriate the body of a casino dealer who was shot dead in Bangkok on Monday night. Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation spokesman Kuy Kuong told The Post on Wednesday that officials are preparing paperwork to

  • Chikungunya hits 15 provinces, says gov’t

    Ministry of Health spokeswoman Or Vandine said on Thursday that the chikungunya outbreak in the Kingdom has spread to 15 provinces. Some 1,700 people are now suspected to have the disease. Vandine urged people to prevent its further spread by eliminating shelters for the Aedes aegypti mosquitoes

  • Gov’t exempts visa A and B holders from Covid fees

    Airline passengers who are diplomats and officials of international organisations holding Type A and B visas for travel to Cambodia are exempted from paying Covid-19 testing fees, said the Ministry of Health in its latest adjustment of rules on Wednesday. Health Minister Mam Bun Heng

  • Bill covering dress code draws ire

    Ministry of Interior secretary of state Ouk Kim Lek responded on Tuesday to criticism concerning a draft law that would ban women from wearing overly revealing clothing, saying that input from all parties will be considered as the law moves through the promulgation process. Several

  • Passing the test: Is Cambodia’s education system failing its people?

    The Kingdom’s education system needs to grow its people but some flaws might stifle​ this growth Coming from the Khmer Rouge occupation, with the loss of many scholars and academicians and a collapsed government, the education system had to be reconstructed from scratch – one

  • What’s the deal with Cambodia and China’s FTA?

    Cambodia’s Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with China kicks off a series of FTAs in future but for now, critics wonder what else the parties could bring to the table apart from what it already has to date By the end of this year, Cambodia