Godrej Agrovet to enter palm oil refining

The diversified agribusiness player is looking at this opportunity now with renewed momentum in the sector following the introduction in 2021 of the National Mission on Edible Oil — Oil Palm

FPJ BureauUpdated: Friday, August 26, 2022, 04:46 PM IST
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Mumbai: Godrej Agrovet, the country’s largest oil palm cultivator and palm oil processor, is setting up a greenfield refinery, close to its oil mills in Andhra Pradesh. The company is also exploring another refinery project in the North East, which may come up in future depending on the demand for refining in that region.

The diversified agribusiness player is looking at this opportunity now with renewed momentum in the sector following the introduction in 2021 of the National Mission on Edible Oil — Oil Palm (NMEO-OP).

“Our first refinery, in Andhra Pradesh, will be commissioned by the end of the current fiscal,” Sougata Niyogi, Godrej Agrovet’s CEO for the oil palm business vertical, told The Free Press Journal.

“It can cater to our captive need originating from oil palm work in the southern states along with demand from other crude palm oil players in the region,” Niyogi said.

“We may also look at another unit in the Northeast, which will cater to demand from the region, where our cultivation and development is expanding to three more states —Assam, Tripura and Manipur — in addition to the existing plantations in Mizoram.”

Godrej Agro, which signed new memoranda of understanding with the three states on Tuesday, also plans to increase its acreage of oil palm cultivation to 1 lakh hectares from the current 65,000 over the next three years.

The company expects the governments of Assam, Tripura and Manipur and other agencies concerned to actively support its effort.

“Oil palm plantations in the Northeast typically face challenges like small land holdings, difficulties in evacuation of fruits from the farm to the collection centres, higher cost of inward transportation, and high cost of transportation of crude palm oil to refineries. However, the new policy has addressed some of these challenges through appropriate incentive options,” Niyogi explained.

Under the new agreements signed on Tuesday, Godrej Agrovet will be allotted land for promotion and development of sustainable oil palm plantations in the three states. The company also has plantations in Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Odisha, Goa and Maharashtra.

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