Jakarta, 22 August 2021 -- President Joko Widodo continues to encourage porang to become an exported agricultural commodity and a new mainstay of food source in the country. In line with the President, PT Bank Negara Indonesia (Persero) Tbk (BNI) made Porang one of the leading clusters with a global orientation. This clustering of superior food crops is the Company's effort to support government programs in the agricultural sector.
This clustering is also in line with the Ministry of SOEs’s efforts which have established eight agricultural clusters, namely rice clusters, corn clusters, oil palm clusters, sugarcane clusters, citrus clusters, ornamental plants clusters, coffee clusters, and porang clusters.
To note, porang or in Latin is called Amorphopallus blume muelleri is a kind of plant tubers glucomannan containing carbohydrates or sugars in complex form. Porang is usually processed into rice, shirataki, mixed ingredients in cake products, bread, ice cream, candy, jelly, jam, and thickener in syrup products. Porang is also often processed as a cosmetic product. Currently, porang is widely consumed by China, Vietnam, and Japan.
Porang is a new commodity that can provide good added value, not only for porang processing companies, but also for the surrounding environment and the welfare level of porang farmers. Communities around the forest who previously did logging, now do not need to encroach on the forest. By cultivating porang, farmers can earn up to IDR 40 million in 8 months. This achievement is estimated for every one hectare of porang planted in the first planting season.
This is a collaborative effort of Ministry of Agriculture (Kementan), Ministry of State-Owned Enterprises (KBUMN), and Provincial/Regional Governments in supporting the agricultural sector towards national food security in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic.
During his working visit in Madiun, on 19 August 2021, the President conducted a groundbreaking for the expansion of PT Asia Prima Konjac factory as well as reviewing the porang processing process from raw goods into semi-finished goods. The location is in Caruban District, Madiun, East Java.
President Jokowi took the time to dialogue with several representatives of porang farmers. Also accompanying President Jokowi in the activity were the Cabinet Secretary, Pramono Anung, the Minister of Agriculture, Syahrul Yasin Limpo, the Governor of East Java, Khofifah Indar Parawansa, the President Director of PT Asia Prima Konjac, Pin Haris and the BNI’s Branch Manager, Madiun Suhartono.
BNI synergizes with PT Asia Prima Konjac which is a porang processing factory to increase the export value of porang commodities. BNI's role is to provide financing support in the form of distributing People's Business Credit (KUR) to porang farmers.
BNI also synergizes with various parties in providing assistance and empowerment for farmers by integrating an ecosystem, starting from the supply side which ensures the availability of business needs ranging from seeds, fertilizers and agricultural equipment to ensuring market availability so as to create a financial transaction in the form of a close loop system. So with this synergy, it is expected to be able to increase the export capacity of porang while increasing the welfare of the farmers.
BNI’s Institutional Relation Director, Sis Apik Wijayanto said, BNI's support for porang commodity sub-sector agriculture will continue to be increased in line with the increase in export value and the expansion of porang commodity planting area. This porang commodity can be an alternative business that has considerable and promising potential to be developed.
Sis Apik conveyed, distribution of BNI KUR to agricultural sector is carried out in a clustered manner and covers the ecosystem from upstream to downstream. In addition, BNI empowers MSMEs to expand market access through the Xpora program that supports export-oriented products.
On this occasion, Sis Apik also said that the distribution of BNI’s KUR has increased by 75% YoY in terms of distribution volume and 43% YoY from the number of MSMEs and other small business groups. The distribution of KUR to Porang flagship cluster is expected to help MSMEs to be able to survive in facing the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Until July 2021, the realization of BNI's KUR distribution in agricultural sector reached Rp 5.1 trillion, which was felt by 116,427 KUR recipients throughout Indonesia. The distribution of cluster KUR is one form of BNI's real support in the National Economic Recovery program.