Indonesian Oil Palm Research Institute signs MOU with Solidaridad Network

26 May 2011

Indonesia’s leading research institute, Indonesian Oil Palm Research Insgtitute (IOPRI, locally known as Pusat Penelitian Kelapa Sawit) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding(MOU) with Solidaridad Network, a Dutch foundation and non-governmental organization that specializes in linking up the end users of agri-commodities with smallholder farmers for training initiatives across the world.

The MOU will be used to combine the renowned and respected experience of IOPRI in the Indonesian oil palm industry and in smallholder oil palm training in particular with the globally recognized experiences of Solidaridad Network to improve the livelihood of smallholders in rural areas where poverty is commonly found.

Dr Witjaksana Darmosarkoro, the Director of IOPRI said “IOPRI has been developing knowledge-based products and services through extensive research projects which are mostly required long time and a lot of resources. Various packages of technologies are available at IOPRI to support the development of oil palm industry. IOPRI has enhanced its program to help the oil palm smallholders. About 40% of the 8 million ha of oil palm plantation in the country belong to the smallholders. This creates a big opportunity to alleviate poverty by helping the smallholders. We need to improve their capacity and ability so they can apply appropriate technologies to make their plantation sustainable.”

He added:

“Solidaridad have a long history in many different agri-commodities, helping smallholders around the world – in tea, coffee, soy and sugar, to name a few. We are looking forward to working together and further assisting the Indonesian government with its smallholder oil palm initiatives. I am confident that the collaboration with Solidaridad will strengthen our capacity to contribute even more for the development of smallholding oil palm plantation”. 

Jan Maarten Dros, Head of Agri-Commodities for the Solidaridad Network explained:

“We are really excited about the great fit between the IOPRI and Solidaridad in assisting Indonesian oil palm smallholders. When properly developed and managed, oil palm plantations play a critical role in reducing rural and frontier poverty in Indonesia, and so we are delighted to be partnering with IOPRI. They have tremendous experience in providing training for smallholders, and we hope to work with IOPRI and with plantation companies and the Indonesian government in assisting oil palm smallholders in Indonesia.”

The MOU aims to support smallholders in sustainable agricultural production, processing and trading of palm oil and palm oil products, swapping experiences and tools on voluntary standard schemes, smallholder farmer training, and better agricultural practices. It will also extend to IOPRI and Solidaridad 

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