This story excerpt was translated from bahasa Indonesia. To read the original story in full, visit Barta1.com. You may also view the original story on the Rainforest Journalism Fund website here. Our website is available in English, Spanish, bahasa Indonesia, French, and Portuguese.
The presence of oil palm plantations in Gane, South Halmahera threatens coconut plantations that have been cultivated by residents for half a century. The presence of palm oil has even changed the socio-economy of the local community. Many residents choose to become oil palm plantation laborers rather than coconut farmers. The following is Budi Nurgianto's coverage in Halmahera.
Abubakar (56), a resident of Gane Dalam Village, South East Gane Subdistrict, South Halmahera, North Maluku, was seen busy sharpening a machete on the front porch of his house on Wednesday, January 5, 2022. On the left side a cup of warm coffee and a pack of cigarettes accompanied him to work. Occasionally calling his wife who was busy preparing provisions and needs in the garden.
Abubakar wanted to rush to his coconut plantation, which was not far from the village. Despite the drizzling rain that had been pouring down on the village since dawn, he insisted on getting to the plantation as soon as possible to finish harvesting the coconuts.
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"I have to get to the plantation before noon. There are still ten coconut trees that I haven't climbed. If I delay, I'm afraid I won't be able to harvest them," Abubakar told Barta, January 5, 2022.
Abubakar is one of dozens of coconut farmers in Gane Dalam Village, South Halmahera, North Maluku who still routinely maintain and clean coconut plantations. Every day, he climbs and harvests old coconuts to be made into copra. Abubakar's one-hectare coconut plantation is harvested every six months. Once harvested, he can get 2 tons of copra with a selling price of IDR 3-5 thousand per kilogram.