Palm oil import hinders coconut oil industry: Ex-CGA President | Daily News

Palm oil import hinders coconut oil industry: Ex-CGA President

The Coconut Growers Association (CGA) is of the view that the industry would be benefitted if the State could allow regular export of fresh coconut and impose firm restrictions on the importation of palm oil. That could ensure a reasonable farm-gate price per nut, former President of the Coconut Growers Association, Ranjith Dias said.

“The copra and coconut oil industries have forced some coconut mills to be closed down due to the unlimited importation of palm oil,” he said.

The improved weather conditions of monsoonal rains which commenced during 2017 – 2018, have enhanced coconut yield throughout the country, this year.

The cultivation which has expanded to the North and East provinces has also given a good yield and the coconut crop yield could increase to 562 million nuts during the period from January to June. This is a 44 percent increase over the figures of 2018, and the Association is of the view that the actual crop production this year would be around 1,840 million nuts.

“Good agricultural practices will help to keep the cost of production (COP) per nut around Rs 35 on the basis of 60 trees per acre bearing 60 nuts per tree. Then, the average farm-gate price of a husked coconut would be around Rs. 29 to 32 and this price would still come down to Rs. 25 per nut, when the crops are harvested in April and May. This creates the possibility of farm-gate prices to go down, even below Rs 25, which means the selling price might come down below the COP,” he said.

He said that the Association has several experts who conduct research. Some of them are CGA past President Ranjith Dias who had also served as the secretary and treasurer, Association President Jayantha B. Samarakoon and CGA Committee Member Chrishantha Jayawardena.

According to Jayawardena, due to the low coconut production during 2016 and 2017, the price of a coconut nut was increased from Rs. 100 and 120 and as a result, there was a marked increase in the use of coconut milk and powder packets and a drastic reduction of consumption of fresh coconut.

 


 

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