Bio Daun Offers Lemongrass Franchise Opportunities
7 OCTOBER 2008 – BUSINESS TIMES
BIO Daun Plantation Sdn Bhd, one of the largest producers of lemongrass in the east coast of Malaysia, is offering franchise opportunities to aspiring entrepreneurs and to expedite its business expansion.
Lemongrass is a herb identified for agriculture development and an important source of income within the East Coast Economic Region (ECER) states of Pahang, Terengganu, Kelantan and the district of Mersing, Johor.
In line with the Ninth Malaysia Plan to approach agriculture as a business, Bio Daun has planted, processed and marketed lemongrass or Cymbopogon Citratus since December 2007.
“Lemongrass is a high yield agriculture product, which is ready for harvesting within a short period of six months,” said Bio Daun Plantation director Mohd Nizam Mohamed in a statement yesterday.
“Its essential oil and powder extract is lucrative because it has big commercial potential, both locally and for export,” he added.
“Worth RM1.6 billion, the market for lemongrass essential oil is escalating at 10 to 15 per cent per year. The biggest demand comes from Europe, specifically Germany, the US and Japan.”
Starting from its base of 3.7ha of abandoned land in Kuala Lipis, Bio Daun now farms 121ha of land in both Pahang and Kelantan.
“By farming on abandoned land, Bio Daun is in step with the government’s ‘Bumi Hijau’ policy to encourage sustainable farming while creating a pleasant environment,” said Mohd Nizam.
“In Kelantan, we are farming on abandoned land, while over 40ha of land is rented from farmers who are no longer planting tobacco.”
Bio Daun said 9,125 stumps of lemongrass plants can be grown on a hectare of land, creating income of between RM35,000 and RM42,500 upon harvest after six months.
“We have just harvested lemongrass from eight hectare of land. With the assistance of the Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute, the lemongrass has been processed into essential oil and powder extract at a factory in Negri Sembilan,” said Mohd Nizam.
The world’s biggest producers of lemongrass are Indonesia and China.
Lemongrass is a widely used herb in Asian cuisine. It is also used as an insect repellent, for aromatherapy, perfumes, cosmetics and anti-cancer products.