Palangka Raya (ANTARA) - Agriculture Minister Amran Sulaiman launched the BUN 500 program in Sidomulyo Village, Palangka Raya City, Central Kalimantan Province, on Thursday, to provide 500 million superior-quality seedlings.

"Today, we are starting to supply these superior-quality seeds from Central Kalimantan. We know that the governor is a hardworking person who has prepared horticulture and plantations on a large scale in Central Kalimantan," Minister Sulaiman noted in Palangka Raya.

The minister remarked that currently, production at several horticulture plantations was far below the national average owing to careless planting. Moreover, in some areas, the planting of seeds usually reached 70 percent, so the productivity was low.

Hence, the BUN 500 program, entailing the provision of superior plantation seeds, is expected to help farmers boost production to increase the production value.

Moreover, hopes ride high on this program increasing production at harvest. The BUN 500 program is claimed to be able to increase yields by two to three folds as compared to that of ordinary seeds.

"We can compare with the value of national production. For instance, coffee is currently only 700 kg per hectare per year. However, with such seeds, the production can reach 3.5-4 tons per year, thereby indicating a 400 percent rise," he pointed out.

The types of superior seeds prepared under the program comprise those of rubber, sugarcane, cloves, cashew, coffee, cocoa, coconut, pepper, tea, and nutmeg.

Central Kalimantan Governor Sugianto Sabran affirmed that his party had divided the planting zone according to regional conditions.

"Each of our central programs is ready to succeed, as Central Kalimantan is also for Indonesia. We have, for example, the clusters in the Barito river basin suitable for cultivating chocolate and coffee, while coconut is planted in the Central Kalimantan coastal region," he explained.

In the meantime, Head of the Central Kalimantan Plantation Service Rawing Rambang noted that superior seeds for at least five varieties were prepared for Central Kalimantan through the BUN 500 program.

"The seeds for rubber, coconut, cacao, coffee, and pepper had been prepared. For planting and distribution, they are aligned with the regional conditions, ranging from soil conditions and topography, to culture," he added.

Translator: Rendhikl Andika/Eliswan Azly
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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