PT Pupuk Indonesia (Persero) through its subsidiary, PT Pupuk Kalimantan Timur (Pupuk Kaltim), is developing innovation in the application of precision agriculture as an anticipatory action of industrial disruption by utilizing information technology to determine recommendations for precision fertilization using satellite technology to identify, analyze, and process information on spatial and temporal diversity in oil palm plantations called PreciPalm (Precision Agriculture Platform for Oil Palm).
Precipalm provides information on the nutritional conditions of the macro elements of oil palm land rapidly and precisely by using a digital map of the land, which is processed from satellite images and mathematical models. Information on land characteristics is then used as a basis for producing recommendations for fertilizing N (Nitrogen), P (Phosphor), K (Potassium) and Mg (Magnesium), and can be used for real-time monitoring of post-fertilization plantation land nutrition conditions.
Managing Director of Pupuk Indonesia, Bakir Pasaman, appreciated Pupuk Kaltim's initiation through PreciPalm as an agrisolution program to increase the competitiveness of non-subsidized fertilizer products in the industrial era 4.0. "PreciPalm is the first satellite-based precision farming solution in Indonesia for oil palm plantations," explained Bakir. According to Bakir, PreciPalm can provide benefits in supporting the management effectiveness of oil palm plantation maintenance in Indonesia.
Bakir also assessed that precision agriculture was the solution to a new business model for selling NPK fertilizers, as well as increasing the attractiveness and competitiveness of national fertilizer products. Precision agriculture is an effective effort to obtain optimal and sustainable benefits by keep maintaining environmental sustainability. "PreciPalm is one of the strategic plans in the business transformation of PI Group where the company is required to be able to focus on customer-oriented," explained Bakir.
PreciPalm provides excellent prospects to support the marketing of non-subsidized NPK fertilizers. The prospect of using Precipalm, according to Bakir, was also very strategic because it was only Pupuk Kaltim which had a satellite-based fertilizer recommendation solution. Oil palm smallholders can focus on increasing the productivity of oil palm plantations by applying the principles of precision agriculture as a way to modern agriculture as proclaimed by the Ministry of Agriculture. "PreciPalm can be the forerunner to the success of PI Group in implementing agricultural solutions through precision fertilization recommendations," explained Bakir.
In line with Bakir, the Acting Tasks Managing Director of Pupuk Kaltim, Meizar Effendi, said that the rapid development of agriculture which requires the development of innovation is the basis for the realization of PreciPalm Pupuk Kaltim in collaboration with Bogor Agricultural Institute (IPB). "PreciPalm is a smart farming concept to optimize the increase in agricultural output in quality and quantity with efficient use of resources," explained Meizar.
After launching in December 2018, field testing at oil palm plantations of PTPN 3, PTPN 5 and PTPN 7 in the first quarter of 2019, currently Pupuk Kaltim has been entering the commercialization stage of PreciPalm to be marketed to consumers, both corporations and oil palm farmers. On Monday (24/8) Pupuk Kaltim conducted training to increase the competence of Pupuk Kaltim's human resources in the fields of precision agriculture and Precipalm. The aim was to improve competence in the fields of precision agriculture, remote sensing and Geographical Information Systems which were needed in operating PreciPalm. "Through this training, we hope Pupuk Kaltim employees can get ready to provide agro-services solutions as added value to consumers," explained Meizar.
The development of PreciPalm was also appreciated by the Rector of Bogor Agricultural Institute (IPB), Prof. Arif Satria. "PreciPalm is a good first step for the development of industry 4.0 in the agricultural sector," explained Arif Satriya. Currently, continued Arif Satria, IPB was conducting trials on robots; a robot specifically for fertilization and a robot for harvesting palm oil. The robots are equipped with cameras and sensors that will find out whether the palms are fit for harvest or not. If the oil palm is deemed not suitable for harvesting, the robots will pass it. "This robotics innovation certainly needs to be developed because the resulting measurements are precise through the instrument," explained Arif Satriya. (nav)