ICECRD ACTIVITIES – The Ministry of Agriculture (Kementan) annually commemorates Plantation Day which falls on December 10. This year, the commemoration of the 63rd Plantation Day carries the theme “Optimizing Plantation Exports in an Effort of Economic Recovery” which was held at Scientia Square Park, Tangerang Regency, Banten (10/12/20).
Agricultural Research and Development Agency (IAARD), Ministry of Agriculture through the Indonesian Center For Estate Crops Research and Development (ICECRD) together with 4 Technical Implementing Units under it, namely the Research Institute for Industrial and Refreshing Plants (IIBCRI), Research Institute for Spices and Medicinal Plants (ISMCRI), Center for Palma Plant Research (IPCRI) and the Research Institute for Sweeteners and Fibers (ISFCRI) were also present to make the commemoration of the 63th Plantation Day a success.
Various research innovation products exhibited by the Plantation Research and Development Center include, among others, kukuwon coffee, robusta coffee, liberoid coffee, cocoa kukuwon, Biotris, kukuwon bio fertilizer, biotri-V, various spices, pepper oil, clove oil, citronella oil, nutmeg balsam, turmeric asem, citronella soap, VCO, healthy cooking oil, coconut sugar, coconut pulp sticks, hair and body lotion, ginco coconut, palmira sago biscuits, hemp, cotton bronesia 1, 2, 3 agribun, sugar cane, tobacco, ant sugar, sesame, roselle tea, roselindo1, 2, 3 and 4.
The exhibition also featured seeds of coffee, cocoa, cloves, pepper and nutmeg as well as publications published by the Plantation Research and Development Center.
Minister of Agriculture Dr. H. Syahrul Yasin Limpo, SH, MH, in his speech said that the commemoration of Plantation Day is a historic day for the development of Indonesian agricultural modernization.
“This commemoration is also a form of appreciation to farmers and planters in Indonesia. Because so far, the plantation sub-sector has been able to make a real contribution to increasing state income. Therefore, the plantation sub-sector must be a common concern,” he said
This year’s commemoration of Plantation Day was carried out in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, in an atmosphere full of concern and the national and world economic conditions were experiencing a very deep economic contraction, resulting in a very real impact on the world of health and the national economy in all aspects of life. The Minister of Agriculture further added that the agricultural sector in a pandemic condition has increased.
“In the second quarter of 2020, the GDP of the agricultural sector grew by 16.24 percent and in the third quarter it grew another 2.15 percent. We are all part of the energy that the agricultural sector is experiencing today’s growth. None of us should pat his chest too high, we are working for the common interest and the national interest,” added Syahrul.
In his remarks, the Minister of Agriculture also said that based on records from the Central Statistics Agency (BPS, provisional figures), the value of agricultural exports from January to October 2020 was 359.5 trillion Rupiah, an increase of 11.6 percent compared to the same period last year. With this value, the plantation sub-sector became the largest contributor to exports in the agricultural sector with a contribution of 326.86 Trillion Rupiah (90.92%).
The exports of plantation commodities, which surged in January-October, were contributed by palm oil, rubber, cocoa, coconut and coffee commodities.
“This shows that the export opportunities for plantation commodities as a source of foreign exchange continue to increase even though in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. This effort is in line with the Ministry of Agriculture’s program which is determined to realize the Triple Exports Movement (Gratieks),” he said.
In the future, the Minister of Agriculture hopes that the plantation sub-sector needs serious attention from all parties, including SOEs and the private sector, so that it is hoped that farmers’ corporations will be built. Farmers and planters must be and become partners of the private sector and state-owned enterprises, so that farmers can increase their income and welfare.
“To encourage the achievement of Gratieks, the Ministry of Agriculture continues to strive for the development of strategic plantation commodities within the framework of the Movement to Increase Production, Added Value and Plantation Competitiveness (Grasida),” explained Syahrul.
Head of the Center for Plantation Research and Development Ir. Syafaruddin, Ph.D . who was also present said that the 63th Plantation Day is expected to encourage commitment, motivation, creativity, and participation of all plantation stakeholders, both government, private and community, to take a role in increasing the role of plantation exports and economic recovery.
“We all hope that the commemoration of Plantation Day will be a momentum to encourage commitment, motivation, creativity, and participation of all plantation stakeholders to increase the role of plantation exports and economic recovery. Of course, the Plantation Research and Development Center with all its research innovations are also always ready to support and work together for this,” said Syafaruddin.
This year’s Commemoration of Plantation Day is filled with a series of activities including: the release of superior plantation commodity exports, the handover of the Indonesian Plantation Pratama Award (APPI), the signing of the MoU between the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Industry, talk shows, export forums and exhibitions.
The commemoration of the 63th Plantation Day was also attended by the Minister of Agriculture for the period 2004-2009 Anton Apriyantono, echelon 1 ranks of the Ministry of Agriculture, Member of Commission IV of the Indonesian House of Representatives Endang Setyawati Thohari, Governor of West Java Ridwan Kamil and Regent of Tangerang Ahmed Zaki Iskandar. (Anjas)