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Stakeholders call for modern palm oil processing plants

AGRICULTURAL stakeholders have called for the need of creating an enabling environment to attract investment in the production and processing of palm oil in the country.

The call has come at the time when most farmers are still using traditional methods in processing of palm oil and packaging.

Recently a lecturer and researcher from Mbeya University of Science and Technology, Dr Zaharan Hussein, said the use of traditional palm oil processing methods makes the final product to the tendency of irritating and emitting a foul smell.

He said traditional processing technologies that continue to be used in many areas lead to oil loss. He added that poor production of palm oil has also contributed to the oil produced being substandard.

Dr Hussein said palm oil has been widely used as a raw material in the manufacture of butter, soap and cosmetics, adding that people could benefit greatly if they stick to quality.

The researcher urged policy makers and other stakeholders to provide education to the public on the use of modern technology in the production of palm oil.

According to Dr Hussein, Crude Palm Oil (CPO) knowledge of proper postharvest handling practices would enhance the production of good quality oil.

He said training on good hygienic practice by farmers and post-harvest handling of palm fruits before oil extraction is of paramount importance.

“Farmers should adhere to good hygienic practices, which is one of the major challenges for production of good quality CPO using local and traditional extraction techniques,” he said.

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