Oil Palm Industry Economic Journal Vol. 10 (1) March 2010 p. 14-25

A Study on the Perceptions of the Supervised Fertilizer Cluster (KBT) Members in the KBT Programme

Roslan Abas ; Mohd Arif Simeh; Ramli Abdullah and Adzmi Hassan
Received:    Accepted:    Available Online:


The purpose of this study is to gauge the perceptions of the supervised fertilizer cluster (KBT) members on the KBT programme that was launched six years ago by MPOB. A total of 1508 questionnaires were distributed which comprised 64 questionnaires for oil palm millers, 361 for dealers and 1083 for smallholders. To measure the perceptions, respondents were asked to indicate their level of agreement to various statements related to KBT. Their perceptions were gauged using a fivepoint Likert scale and a reliability test was applied using Cronbach’s alpha. To ensure statements were correctly grouped, factor analysis was applied on the responses from the smallholder sector. The millers and dealers perceived that the smallholders supplied quality fresh fruit bunches (FFB), that they had become more knowledgeable, and that they consistently supplied FFB to the mills and the dealers. Nevertheless, the millers and dealers did not perceive any increase in FFB yield and in fertilizer application as a result of the KBT programme. From the smallholders’ perceptions, the KBT programme had increased their knowledge in field management, fertilizer application, diseases control, the FFB pricing mechanism and also in the functions of MPOB. The programme was able to increase FFB yield and their monthly income. The study concluded that the KBT programme had increased the quality of FFB, improved the understanding of the functions of MPOB and had increased technical knowledge. However, the millers and the dealers observed that the KBT programme was unable to cause an increase in the FFB yield produced by the smallholders.

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