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27.05.2006 General News

BOPP replanting plantation with new palm tree variety


Benso (W/R) May.26 -GNA-The Benso Oil Palm Plantation (BOPP) is replanting 5000 hectares of palm trees with unipalm, a variety developed by Unilever in collaboration with some research institutions. Mr. Neneyo Mate-Kole, Managing Director of BOPP, who announced this at the company's open-day for the media at Benso near Takoradi, said the replanting project would be completed by 2014.

Mr Mate-Kole said so far, 2000 hectares of the new variety has been planted and 250 hectares would be planted every year. He said replanting a hectare would cost between 1,200 dollars and 1,500 dollars and the cost includes the cost of seedlings, maintenance and harvesting. Mr Mate-Kole said the old trees were too costly to harvest.

Mr. Mate-Kole said the company produced 12 point five tonnes per hectare of palm fruit in 2005 as against 9 point 9 tonnes per hectare in 2004. He said in 2002, the company produced 13.3 tonnes per hectare and 13.1 tonnes per hectare in 2001. Mr. Mate-Kole said the company spent 49 billion cedis on community projects and on health and accommodation for employees last year. He said the company spent about five billion cedis on chemicals imported from Japan to spray diseased palm trees. Mr. Mate-Kole said it is the policy of BOPP to establish and maintain high standards of occupational health, safety and environmental protection at work in order to prevent personal injury, illness, property damage, fires, security loss and environmental pollution.