..thus it is (more) affordable for the community.
Jakarta (ANTARA) - Red palm cooking oil is cheaper than the refined, bleached, and deodorized (RBD) palm cooking oil that is normally used by the community, Cooperatives and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) Minister Teten Masduki has said.

"The selling price (of red cooking oil) is cheaper since the (production) process is simpler," he explained after attending a limited meeting held to discuss the downstreaming of the palm oil industry at the Presidential Palace in Jakarta on Monday.

The production process of red cooking oil is different from RBD cooking oil, as the latter undergoes a bleaching process. Since red cooking oil is not bleached, it contains higher protein and Vitamin A.

During the limited meeting, President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) said that he supports the development of a cooperatives-based red cooking oil industry, the minister informed.

The government will set up a number of pilot factories for the development of the commodity in Sumatra and Kalimantan regions, among others.

"I am optimistic with the (development of the) red cooking oil because it is (more) healthy and cheaper (than the RBD one), thus it is (more) affordable for the community," Masduki remarked.

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He said that cooperatives can directly buy fresh fruit bunches (FFBs) of oil palm from local farmers, process them into crude palm oil (CPO) or red cooking oil, and sell the oil.

"It (the cooperatives-based production) is a solution for farmers since the prices of FFBs have been unstable (lately). It is also a solution for a more even distribution of cooking oil supply since currently, most of the cooking oil factories are located on Java Island,” he explained.

This would also help diversify the cooking oil supply in Indonesia since there will be RBD cooking oil, which is clear in color and commonly used by the community, as well as red palm cooking oil, the minister noted.

Though a number of factories are manufacturing red cooking oil, still, the President has asked for a pilot project for the development of the product to establish a sustainable market for the commodity, he added.

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Translator: Rangga Jingga, Uyu Liman
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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