“Due to the heavy dependence on imports for edible oils, it is important to make efforts for increasing the domestic production of edible oils in which increasing area and productivity of oil palm play an important part,” the cabinet secretariat averred in a press statement.
To establish the new scheme, the Centre will provide Rs8,844 crore while states will contribute Rs2,196 crore comprising the viability gap funding.
The new scheme’s motto is to operate in an additional area of 6.5 lakh hectares under the oil palm by the fiscal year 2026. By fy26, the primary aim is to operate under 10 lakh hectares. This will result in the crude palm oil (CPO) manufacture by 11.20 lakh tonnes by FY26 and 28 lakh tonne by FY30.
“The scheme will immensely benefit the oil palm farmers, increase capital investment, create employment generation, shall reduce the import dependence and also increase the income of the farmers,” the press statement added.
Pl palm farmers manufacture fresh fruit bunches (FFBs) from which oil is extracted by the workers. For now, the prices of these FFBs are connected to international CPO prices and therefore may fluctuate.
For the very first time, the government will offer a price assurance to oil palm farmers for their finished product. This will be called the Viability Price (VP). This will shield farmers from global market fluctuations and volatility.
“This VP shall be the annual average CPO price of the last 5 years adjusted with the wholesale price index to be multiplied by 14.3 %. This will be fixed yearly for the oil palm year from 1 November to 31 October. This assurance will inculcate confidence in the Indian oil palm farmers to go for the increased area and thereby more production of palm oil. A Formula price (FP) will also be fixed which will be 14.3% of CPO and will be fixed every month. The viability gap funding will be the VP-FP and if the need arises, it would be paid directly to the farmers’ accounts in the form of DBT,” the press statement asserted.