Vege oil experts: No to oil palm planting moratorium

WELL-RESPECTED and authoritative vegetable oil analysts Thomas Mielke and Dorab Mistry have rejected calls by green activists like Greenpeace for a moratorium on oil palm planting in Indonesia and Malaysia.

They urged some 1,800 participants at the 3-day Palm and Lauric Oils Conference and Exhibition (POC 2010) not to be misled by green activists' lobby for a limit on the expansion of oil palm plantations. The conference, which traditionally focused on price forecasts for palm and coconut oils, has now taken a more holistic approach.

"Don't be lulled by the lobby for a moratorium on oil palm planting. Contrary to what Greenpeace is saying, there is just not enough vegetable oils to go around.

"Global vegetable oil stocks are tight," Mielke said, adding the world's burgeoning population would need more food and fuel in the years ahead.

"If there is a limit on expansion of oil palm planting, vegetable oil prices will soar to such unreasonable levels that more poor people will go hungry," Mielke added.

Mistry, meanwhile, hinted that Greenpeace's selective lobby against palm oil could actually turn out to be trade barriers disguised as environmental concerns. "The moratorium talk on oil palm plantings within the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) can have dangerous consequences. The industry is not yet ready ... the world is not able to expand soyabean areas and, therefore, needs more palm oil," he said.

"Since the begining of this year, the sale of Geen Palm Oil certificates has picked up. This is an excellent development. The RSPO has done a commendable job, so far, but it needs to proceed cautiously in measured steps.

Mistry went on to question the consequence and motive behind the anti-palm oil lobby by Greenpeace and affiliates. "Are we going to restrict vegetable oil consumption to the rich few and deny it to the many poor?

"Is this what we mean by caring for the planet and its people or shall we rephrase it to say -- We care for a part of this planet and a portion of its people?" Mistry questioned.

3 Responses to Vege oil experts: No to oil palm planting moratorium

  1. C'mon Malaysians. Don't fall for the propaganda of the ang mohs.

    They're trying to stop the expansion of oil palm estates as palm oil is making fast inroads into their markets.

    Palm oil is now the most popular edible oil in the world for a few simple reasons:
    1. It is the most productive of all vegetable oils with a typical yield of 4-5 metric tons per hectare which is close to 10 times higher than its competitors like soy, corn, sunflower and rapeseed (canola)
    2. The oil is inherently healthful as it is naturally rich in anti-oxidants like tocotrienols (vitamin E), Co Q10 and beta-carotenes (which is why the oil is naturally red in colour)
    3. Due to its extraordinary yield, palm oil is the cheapest cooking oil in the world and because of its price advantage is now increasingly popular as a feedstock for biodiesel.

    Now you know why the ang mohs in Europe, Canada and the US are trembling... and why they have to pay the environmental NGO's to attack palm oil?

    We all know that Malaysia is a small country. Yet, we are the world's largest exporter of palm oil. What does that tell you? Palm oil doesn't require quite as much land (in fact, 10 times less land than the western oilseeds) as these ang mohs would want you to believe!

    Deforestation? Poppycock! After 100 years of planting palm oil, Malaysia still has more than 55% of its landmass gazetted as forest reserve, which is a darn right better than the 10% or so from the industrialised west where these ang mohs hail!

  2. If only more Germans like Thomas Mielke actuall come to Malaysia and Indonesia and see for themselves the difference between oil palm plantations and other oil crops, then only they understand what sustainability really mean.

  3. Palm oil insider 1 April 2010 at 16:32

    The world is not only needing palm oil, in fact the world is ADDICTIVE to palm oil!
    Can you imagine what would happen to our world if ONLY Malaysia and now also Indonesia do not
    produce palm oil?. Can you also imagine what will happen if we produce this oil but doing it very inefficiently and unsustainably?
    Billions of people in the world especially the poor masses will be suffering from oil deficiency and food shortages!
    To supply these requirement by soya and rapeseed
    will require TEN times more land which is therefore ten times more unsustainable!!
    If I am given the power and the mandate, I will instruct that ALL soya and rapeseed farming in the world be stopped immediately and these vast land be planted with green forest again.
    Subsitute these stopped cultivation with oil palm and the world will be 10 times more green and therefore 10 times more sustainable!
    But dont you worry too much about this power that is not bestowed on me, as the natural market forces will take care of the end results:-
    soya and rapeseed cultivation will one day not be cultivated any more due to their uncompetitiveness and unsustainability!

    Keep planting palm oil folks efficiently and sustainably. You are doing the world a good justice!

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