Currently Malaysia is the world’s largest producer and exporter of palm oil products in the international oils and fats market. The advantage which palm oil holds over other oils and fats lies in its productivity, yield and efficiency factors. Oil palm is the most productive oil bearing plant species known.
We are also fortunate that oil palm is less prone to the vagaries of the weather unlike other vegetable oils such as soybean and rapeseed. Being a perennial tree crop, it produces oil the whole year round and is not deleterious to the environment like the annual crops. This definitely is an added advantage as we can ensure a constant supply of raw material for the biodiesel industry.
In terms of price competitiveness, currently palm oil is traded at a discount against most other vegetable oils especially rapeseed and soybean oils. Rapeseed and soybean oils are the two main raw materials for the production of biodiesel in the world. In the biodiesel production, the cost of raw materials i.e. vegetable oil makes up about 70% of the total production cost.