The saplings were distributed to farmers under the Godrej Agrovet factory zone in West Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh, the statement added.

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Besides challenges such as low rainfall and drought, farmers face the problem of low yields offered by the traditional varieties, it said.

“The new variety will play a vital role in meeting the vegetable oil demand in India by overcoming these challenges. While the existing Tenera saplings have the genetic potential to yield 34 to 35 tonnes of fresh fruits bunches (FFB) a hectare, the new high yielding saplings can potentially yield 37 to 38 tonnes of FFB a hectare,” it claimed.

“We are expecting to bring about 160 to 170 hectares area under the new variety of the oil palm saplings during October and November 2020 in Andhra Pradesh,” said Nasim Ali, Chief Executive Officer (Oil Palm Plantation) of Godrej Agrovet. The new variety will be available to oil palm farmers and growers across the country in phases, he added.