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Palm oil is one of the major fats and oils produced and traded in the world today. It forms an
important ingredient in the diet of many people. The cultivation of oil palm continued into the
early 1960s when it began to increase significantly due to the governments agricultural
diversification program that promote the planting of oil palm as a means to reduce dependency
of the countrys economy on natural rubber and tin.

The palm oil industry particularly in Malaysia has evolved dramatically since the last three
decades and hence produced varieties of products such as crude palm oil, palm kernel oil, palm
kernel cake, oleo-chemical as well as new bio-fuel products to fulfill the demand from food and
non-food industry in the world.

Palm oil products have diverse uses in various parts of the world, and come in different forms.
Its products can be used in the pharmaceutical and cosmetic industry, and in the production of
water treatment products and drilling fluids. It is also used in the production of lubricants, soaps,
candles, detergents, as feedstock for biodiesel, and as an alternative to various mineral oils used
in power stations.

Aside from products that cannot be used in any edible form, palm oil products can be used in
making margarine, condensed milk, ice cream, preparation of meals, and various other
edible commodities.

These diverse uses and high demand for palm oil products, contribute to the high growth of the
palm oil business industry in various parts of the world.

The Various Business Ideas and Opportunities in Palm Oil Production

The agricultural business ecosystem is widespread, because of the hundreds and possibly
thousands of various crop types that can be grown and sold as an income stream. In the lot of
these possible agricultural segments lies a profitable niche that only a few would dare venture
into especially in the palm oil business.

Growing, buying, and selling palm oil products is a highly profitable agricultural business for
any new and existing farmer, or agriculture entrepreneur to venture into. There are a lot of
opportunities in this industry such as; bulk purchase & resale of palm oil products, setting up and
growing a palm oil plantation and also palm oil processing plant.

Bulk Purchase & Resale of Palm Oil Products

In this business, the palm oil trader purchases palm oil products when the prices are low usually
during the harvest season, stocks the palm oil products, and then resells them during the off-
harvest season.

During this period, the supply of the commodity in the market is relatively low, and as scarcity
kicks in, the price of the palm oil products begins to rise.

The palm oil products can be bought from local farmers during the harvest period, and preserved
in various storage facilities, before theyre eventually transported for resale in the cities, or other

Palm oil products purchased for resale could also be exported to various locations such as China,
and Singapore.

Setting Up and Growing a Palm Oil Plantation

Growing palm trees can sometimes be the best approach for a palm oil entrepreneur with a long
term vision. Since Malaysia is a rich region for a full and nourished maturity of palm oil products,
setting up a palm oil plantation for high quality crop growth would be a great idea.

The business opportunities that lie in the palm oil business sector in Malaysia are vast and wide
because, far lesser growth and processing of palm oil products in a commercial scale happen in
the region than expected. This large empty demand for more producers advertises a great
opportunity for would-be agricultural entrepreneurs to take advantage of.

With an abundance of rain, more than adequate sunshine, and largely fertile soil in the Malaysia,
growing and processing palm oil products can only get a lot better.

When the oil palms are cultivated, the fruits are crushed to produce palm oil. The white inner
kernel inside the seed of the palm oil fruit can be further crushed to produce palm kernel oil,
which has hundreds of uses.

Palm Oil Processing Plant

While there are palm oil farmers and buyers, therere also the palm oil processors. These
businesses are those that process the fruits to various forms for use in households, factories, and

Large mills can be used to process the palm fruits into palm oil with little human effort. This
saves both time and energy for the farmers and the processors.

Palm oil production, poses potential reputational risks to companies associated with it due to
a major driver of deforestation in the humid tropics. One of the big challenges facing
corporations in is tracing palm oil through large and complex supply chains to commercial
product. By locating areas of production, companies can identify deforestation risk throughout
their supply chains and then engage suppliers and monitor behavior to make progress. But for
most companies, tracking palm oil to the farm where its grown is difficult, costly and time-
consuming. An increasing number of processors, traders, and buyers have, however, begun
taking the important interim step of tracing their supply chains to the mill level.

Mill locations can indicate where palm fruit is processed as well as where palm plantations are
located. Because it is highly perishable, fresh palm fruit must be processed within 24 hours of
harvest, limiting plantation sourcing to an approximate 30-mile (50 km) radius around the mill,
according to company estimates (though this may vary depending on available infrastructure,
such as road density and quality). This means analyzing the area immediately surrounding a mill
can reveal useful information about plantations that fall within its sourcing area. When used with
other data layer, the new mill data set can help companies identify mills in environmentally
sensitive areas.


A new data set launched on Global Forest Watch Commodities helps to globally map palm oil
supply chains by showing the locations of almost 800 mills. Created by World Resources
Institute, the traceability platform KnownSources, from FoodReg and several processors, traders,
and buyers, the mill data provides a clearest picture of palm oil production publicly available. It
creates new opportunities to analyze production areas and mills on a global scale, as well as to
focus attention on new areas where palm oil production is having an impact on forests.

Big Data provides data solutions at the high commercial level all the way down from a business
owner to the hands of farmers. For decision makers of commercial growers and farmer
intermediaries, big data allows:

Analyze the palm oil industry at the local, regional and global level to make smarter
investments and business decisions along the value chain.
Make corporate-level decisions by leveraging aggregated data related the market from
Data Library.
Alerts the market and pricing strategies, to input/output recommendations.
Navigate weather variability by accessing 30 years of historical weather data, daily
weather and forecast data down to the field level.
Send field level data directly to farmers from pest and disease.