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FARMERS INFO - INDEPENDENT FARMERS GET SUSTAINABLE CERTIFICATIONS22 April 2015 , 06:53 WIB | Read : 1019 | By : Atep Yulianto Irawan
THE COOPERATION BETWEEN THE INDEPENDENT FARMERS AND PALM OIL PLANTATION COMPANIES DOES NOT RELATE TO INCREASE THE PRODUCTIVITY ONLY BUT ALSO TO IMPLEMENT SUSTAINABLE PRACTICES.
The end of 2013 was the important moment for palm oil plantation industries in Indonesia. Independent Farmers Association, Amanah accepted theRoundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certifications in the scheme of independent farmers. It was on July 29th, 2013 the ceremony was running in the same time when the 11th Roundtable Meeting was held in Medan, North Sumatera.
Amanah is the first independent association in Indonesia and the second one in the world accepting RSPO certifications. Amanah itself is the partner of Asian Agri since 2012 and it consists of 349 families which have 763 hectares palm oil plantation area around the National Park of Tesso Nilo, Riau.
Chairman of Independent Farmers Association Amanah, Sunarno said, the cooperation with Asian Agri was signed in 2012, a year before getting RSPO certifications. It is said, before making the cooperation, they produced 1,4 tons fruit per hectare per month. “Now we produce 2 tons of fruit per hectare per month,” Sunamo said in Jakarta.
It is clear, the implementation of sustainable practices will not effect to the conservation but the farmers get better production. The cultivation is not randomly done but it refers to the Good Agricultural Practices.
After getting the RSPO certifications, the Independent Farmers Association Amanah is said to get Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil. In January 2015, the ISPO Commission had visited the farmers plantation joined in Amanah.
It seems, the successful story of Amanah is followed by other independent farmers, like Farmers Group Tanjung Sehati from Village of Mekar Jaya, District of Merangin, Jambi Province. Having partership with Setara Jambi Foundation, the farmers joining the farmers group now get RSPO certifications in the scheme of independent farmers though it was not easy to get it..
According to Sahadi from Setara Jambi Foundation, it started from the negative issues about palm oil and the negative issues effected them.
They got some problems too to sell their harvest. Having less information, and the different productions among independent farmers, 227 palm oil farmers finally formed a farmers group. “It consists of 6 farmers groups and the members are 227 farmers. And there are 214 farmers having RSPO certifications,” he recently said.
Beside Farmers Groups Tanjung Sehati, palm oil farmers from South Sumatera in 2014 got RSPO certifications. The farmers joining Villagers Cooperation Tani Maju agreed to make partnership with PT. Hindoli to implement sustainable practices.
They were doubt to cooperate with PT. Hindoli in implementing and cultivating sustainable practices. But after some approaches, including by seeing the plasma plantation productions which cooperated with the company, 45 independent farmers agreed to make partnership with the company. In the middle of 2014, the farmers plantations joining the Villagers Cooperation Tani Maju got RSPO certifications.
To run RSPO certification in independent farmers’ plantation, it is said that in May 2015, there will be the second surveilance (monitoring) for 7 farmers groups joining Amanah Association. “The seven farmers groups will get RSPO certifications,” Sunarno said.
The Farmers Group Usaha Berkat . . .