Embassy of Malaysia, Belgium
Title: Palm Oil and Its Importance from food safety and nutrition perspective
Biography: Kalanithi Nesaretnam
Palm oil is the world’s most traded vegetable oil. 85% of the oil is used for food. It is therefore imperative that the highest standards of food safety and quality should be adopted. This high standard for food can only be achieved by an effective partnership between government regulators and producers. Oil palm plantations cover 16.4 million hectares worldwide which is only 0.3% of the world’s agricultural land. Nevertheless, oil palm has adopted environmental sustainability standards as a key driver. In Malaysia, oil palm cultivation has long advocated sustainable farming practices. The research and development activities engrained within the industry also ensure the industry remains a leader in the production of edible oil. The global market today is facing a potential crisis in terms of ensuring food security. The challenge is to produce and supply safe and nutritious food in a sustainable way for a growing population, which is projected to reach 9 billion by 2050. While demand for food is rising, the amount of land suitable for food production is likely to be limited, mainly through pressures from other uses and climate change. This paper will address some of the steps being considered to overcome these challenges.