On January 15, the Biotechnological Advances in Palm Oil Research Seminar was held at University Putra Malaysia. The invited scientist Prof. Dr. John Wesley Randles of Adelaide University expressed that the main problem in palm oil production recently was infection of Ganoderma which would decrease the number of production and cause the plants’ death.
Non stop efforts were still in progress in finding the most effective solutions to conquer the problem. The research specified its focus on the biotechnology and bio-intensive management.
“We have to stay alert on the high possibilities of new infection like Viroid to spread. It is the main pathogen that can cause a disease called Cadang-cadang to palm oil plantations.”
“More researches need to be conducted in order to get the right interpretation of the pathogen and its potential outcomes to the plantations”
At the same time, speaker from UPM Tropical Agriculture Institute, Assoc. Prof. Datin Dr. Siti Nor Akmar Abdullah contributed her discovery on the way of controlling palm oil gene expressing in tissue.
She said, “It is very crucial towards economic value of the palm oil fabricating tissue in the masocarps and kernel”.
The research was expected to develop strategies in palm oil plant genetics improvement so that the quality and the quantity of the oil production could be increased.
At the same time, Azlan Salimin,20, first year student of Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) from the Faculty of Agriculture was selected to receive the Tan Sri Goh Tong Scholarship.
He said that the scholarship (which worth RM39, 440) is purposely for his four-year-studies in UPM. The scholarship was delivered by Tan Sri Dato’ Lim Kok Thay, the Head Officer of the Asiatic Development company.
Prof. Datuk Dr. Nik Mustapha R. Abdullah, the Vice Chancellor of UPM hoped that Azlan’s presence as the practical trainee at the respective palm oil farming base company would open the channels for more productive collaborations.
He said, “This is such a great opportunity in producing well-trained employees and leaders who are very conscious on the agriculture based sectors but still obeying our national agenda”.
Prepared by Media Section, Corporate Communication Division, UPM.