October 14, 2021

Seedlings finally planted at NBPOL’s new Zifasing project site

New palm planting has commenced at our Zifasing site located in Markham Valley of Morobe Province on October 14, 2021. This project is part of the Markham Farming Company Limited’s (MFCL) Zifasing New Development Project, under the overall supervision of NBPOL’s Ramu Agri-Industries Ltd (RAIL). 

It was a momentous occasion for RAIL, MFCL, the agriculture sector in the province and for Papua New Guinea itself. Initial work including Free Prior Informed Consent (FPIC), planning, negotiations and internal/external studies, which started in early 2016 with seven different customary landowning and clan groups from Zifasing and Tararan villages.  

The new palms were planted at the Orogawi land under the Anga-Owangrompon Incorporated Land Group (ILG) customary landownership. This scheme adopted the “Village Oil Palm” concept where individual families manage two (2) hectares of allocated oil palm block.  

RAIL’s General Manager and director, Mr Ruari Macwilliam, commended the RAIL and MFCL team for overseeing the project from the beginning through the commencement of the new planting. RAIL’s New Development Project Officer, Mr Arison Arihafa expressed his satisfaction and thanked the clan members and ILG executives, and commended them for their consistent cooperation and patience, and for adhering to important procedures in view of NBPOL’s Best Practice Guidelines to see through the initial phase of the project although it took longer than anticipated.  

According to RAIL’s Head of Sustainability, Mr George Samson, the lead-up to the new planting also had a series of robust requirements to be fulfilled under the New Planting Procedure guideline set out by Roundtable of Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO).  

During the signing of Customary Land Usage Agreement, the locals shared their excitement and expressed their appreciation towards NBPOL. They believe that while the initiative will improve their socio-economic livelihoods, the project will also be bringing other positive impacts in the future.