Staff and stakeholder of Silverback Company (SBC) Ltd at the Environment and Rural Development Foundation (ERuDeF), have resolved to strengthen their activities so as to boost production and marketing of products of the company. They made the resolution, Friday May 19, 2017, at ERuDeF’s Head Office in Buea, during an enlarged general meeting.
Summoned by the promoter of the company, who doubles as the President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of ERuDeF, Louis Nkembi, and coming at a time when the company is undergoing some challenges, the meeting brought together producers, transporters, marketers and management of the Silver Back Company Ltd.
The challenges faced by the company were mostly attributed to inadequate collaboration from some community members and stiff competition from Nigerian traders.
“Palm oil communities not having partnership with SBC tend to speculate and cause price fluctuations. Besides, we face a lot of competition from Nigerian buyers who make oil producers to hike their prices so as to maximise profits,” Njom Ignatius, Manager of SBC said.
Faced with these challenges, a new production strategy was introduced, where limited amounts of oil will be purchased with focus on the collection of mill charges. In that regards, milling charges were raised from FCFA1000 to FCFA2000 per tin. Meanwhile, technicians were assigned to mobilise farmers to produce nuts for milling to increase the milling fees. In the same light, marketers were assigned to canvass for buyers to purchase the oil during specific periods.
The stakeholders resolved to produce premium quality with low acidic content. They added that palm oil will also be made of 80% liquid content and 20% solid at all temperatures with no solid particles.
Moreover, Nuts would not spend up to three days before being milled. In addition, all would be nuts for milling, will be carefully selected such that the bad ones could be thrown away so as to have oil of good quality.
To ensure accountability and sustainability, members unanimously agreed that all mill operators will have to produce monthly reports of their activities. They will be in charge of mobilisation and reorganisation of farmers within the framework of the existing communities.
The months of July to October, 2017 were chosen for the mobilisation of palm nut producers to make maximum use of the various mills. The project team was implored to negotiate with buyers for the purchasing of nuts while ensuring that nuts are transported to the mill using the pick-up truck or tricycle where necessary.
The test period for this new approach is to run from May to June 2017. Some 1,400 tins of palm oil are expected to be produce per mill within this period.
With this approach in place it is believed that the challenges will be overcome and the company will start making more profits.