In strategic alignment with Asia Plantation Capital Berhad’s expansion plans in Malaysia, the award-winning, sustainable plantation management company has been collaborating with several small to medium-sized plantations in the country. A pioneer in the industry, Asia Plantation Capital has been cultivating agarwood since 2009, and is known to be the market leader in terms of scientific knowledge and the techniques required to stimulate the resinous heartwood of the endangered Aquilaria tree by inoculation.
The purpose of the various joint ventures is to enable local plantations that lack the necessary skills and expertise, to set up and manage their own Aquilaria tree plantations by providing knowhow and support. One such local plantation, Eco BlackGold, has been one of Asia Plantation Capital’s joint venture partners since late 2014.
Located in Negeri Sembilan, just south of Kuala Lumpur, Eco BlackGold’s plantation has two parcels of land measuring out at four hectares. Since the beginning of a five-year agreement with Asia Plantation Capital, Eco BlackGold has had a total of 5,655 Aquilaria Sinensis trees and recently, in April 2016, acquired another 2,345 mature trees – for a total of some 8,000 trees.
“At Asia Plantation Capital, we’ve set out to lead the way in sustainable plantation management.” said Steve Watts, Asia Plantation Capital’s CEO, Asia Pacific. “We consider very carefully, therefore, when deciding who we partner with, and we are very pleased to be in a partnership with Eco BlackGold in the management of their plantations. They are one of our largest partners, and have been extremely supportive and receptive towards our ideas and the work that we do. Throughout the past year, we have used our patented technology to inoculate 2,627 Aquilaria trees on this plantation, and have seen results in a relatively short space of time. With more and more trees being acquired, we are confident of delivering robust and consistent results.”
He continued, “I believe that the collaboration between our two companies will be extremely beneficial to the development and sustainability of the Aquilaria species, and could possibly establish certain benchmarks for the industry. It has been very exciting, and we look forward to breaking new ground and seizing more growth opportunities as they continue to come our way.”
Sallie Foo, Director of Eco BlackGold said, “With the combination of Asia Plantation Capital’s expertise and our supply of trees, this partnership is set to be a game changer for the industry. It is clear that when we met Asia Plantation Capital, we shared a common vision, as we are both equally concerned with the future of these endangered trees. We believe that we have made the right choice in working with Asia Plantation Capital, and allowing them to manage our plantations in a sustainable manner; at the same time consistently producing the optimal quality and quantity of agarwood and Oud oil.”
Eco BlackGold has also generously loaned an exquisite and highly prized 80-year old agarwood feature to Asia Plantation Capital’s regional head office, which opened officially last month, in downtown Kuala Lumpur.
In nature, infected trees typically produce resin after 20 years or more. However, in the setting of an Asia Plantation Capital managed plantation, agarwood is produced in as little as seven years, and is utilised for a wide variety of end products.
To date, Asia Plantation Capital has inoculated a total of 3,482 Aquilaria trees in Malaysia. The inoculated trees are assiduously monitored by globally recognised experts in Asia Plantation Capital’s research and development team, using individual GPS coordinated tags. Furthermore, a thorough tree audit is carried out every three months, up to the time of harvest.
This joint venture is a part of Asia Plantation Capital’s growth strategy of investing further and expanding operations in Malaysia over the next few years.