ARTICLES

Lontong Medan and the Story of the Taman Raja Garden Run

The melody of the forest fauna can be heard clearly in Taman Raja Gardens, Jambi, when Mustakim, assistant head of PT Inti Indosawit Subur, opens the window. Fresh air also welcomed the residents of the 2,908 hectare garden this Sunday. Yes, it's a holiday, but Mustakim is ready with his sports apparel and the running shoes that always accompany his activities on weekend mornings.

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Nurasia, Principal of SMK 1 Pangkalan Kerinci, Riau Becoming a Teacher is a Calling

Many think that the teacher's job is only to teach. In fact, it’s also important to teach life skills.

This was stated by Nurasia, Principal of SMK 1 Pangkalan Kerinci, Riau Province, one of Asian Agri's school partners which has been part of the Sekolah Sawit Lestari program since 2016.

Sekolah Sawit Lestari sees schools near plantations partner with Asian Agri to teach sustainable oil palm farming. "The plantation agribusiness major is one of the favorites at SMK 1 Pangkalan Kerinci,” said Nurasia.

“Our school is surrounded by oil palm plantations, so many students are also children of smallholders or local residents whose lives depend on oil palm. The combination of theory and direct practice in the field are really needed.”

Twice a week, Asian Agri’s team visits SMK 1 Pangkalan Kerinci to provide motivation and teaching both in the classroom and in the field.

Read more: Nurasia, Principal of SMK 1 Pangkalan Kerinci, Riau Becoming a Teacher is a Calling

Villagers turn palm leaves into a thriving business

Growing oil palms is a mainstay of the local economy in Mekar Jaya Village in Riau Province, and since 2018 the wives of our smallholder farmers have been putting leftover palm fronds to good use – by creating and marketing handicrafts.

The women have even built a gallery, called Maju Jaya Lidi, to sell their handicrafts.

The palm fronds are used to make various crafts, such as plates, trays, fruit holders and glass holders, which help boost the local economy.

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Oil Palm Gives Smallholder Opportunity to Succeed in Motorcycle Workshop Business

Motorcycles are the most popular vehicles in Indonesia, with around 113 million on the roads in 2019.

Bambang Yuliantoro, a second generation oil palm farmer partnered with Asian Agri, realized this presented the ideal business opportunity. Not only would a motorcycle repair shop supplement his income, it would also help him when his plantation underwent replanting.

Finally, five years ago, Bambang took out a bank loan to start a motorcycle repair shop.

Read more: Oil Palm Gives Smallholder Opportunity to Succeed in Motorcycle Workshop Business