08/25/2010

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MALAYSIA: National Rubber Budwood Centre proposed

The National Rubber Budwood Centre may be set up in Sarawak to ensure a sufficient supply of quality raw material for rubber planting.Newly-appointed member of the Malaysian Rubber Board, Dr Elli Luhat, said he would suggest such a centre at the coming board meeting as a few million budwoods might be needed for replanting and new planting activities.He said, unlike in Peninsular Malaysia where replanting was common due to limited land, new plantings in Sarawak required much more budwoods than replanting."There still is much empty land for planters to do new plantings. Since we want our rubber growers to increase their income from tapping, we encourage them to plant high-quality clones," he said.Elli, a forester, said the latest available clone was the 1Malaysia clone.Launched by Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin on 13 August, the RRIM 3001 clone was developed by the board.It has been characterised as having rapid growth and tappable four years after planting, thus reducing the immaturity period. The potential latex production is up to 3,000 kg per hectare per year.(Syed Rashid Ali, Karachi, Pakistan)

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