Govt to release 100,000 tonnes of palm oil
Commerce Minister Boonsong Teriyapirom has revealed five strategies for releasing 100,000 tonnes of crude palm oil from government stocks to shore up the market price of the commodity, after he met with a ministry subcommittee for palm-oil management.
First, 10,000 tonnes of bottled palm oil will be produced by refineries and sold under the ministry's low-price Blue Flag programme. Another 50,000 tonnes will be used for the production of biodiesel and gasohol.
Another 10,000 tonnes each will be used in power plants and in industries such as agricultural machinery and fishing boats. The remaining 10,000 tonnes of crude palm oil will be for export.
The subcommittee also agreed to set conditions for purchasing 50,000 tonnes of palm oil from the mills, worth a total of Bt1.3 billion, at Bt25 per kilogram. This will allow the mills to purchase crude palms fruits from farmers at Bt4 per kilo for fruits with an oil-extraction rate of 17 per cent, and at Bt4.35 per kilo for an extraction rate of 18.5 per cent.
Under the arrangement, the mills will be able to purchase palm fruits from small individual farmers who own no more than 50 rai (8 hectares), or at about 150 tonnes of fruits each.
The farmers involved in the project need to register with the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives.