AOMG members are ready to supply oleochemicals made from RSPO certified sustainable palm oil

The GreenPalm has been hailed as entry level initiative in supporting RSPO. In November 2011 the RSPO Rules for Home and Personal Care Derivatives for Book & Claim was approved by its Executive Board (EB) extending the scope of GreenPalm into oleochemicals and its derivatives.

ASEAN Oleochemical Manufacturers Group (AOMG) felt that a higher commitment to RSPO was needed and that is to physically take RSPO certified oils into the supply chain as quickly as possible. In March 2012 AOMG approached the chairman of the RSPO Rules for Home and Personal Care Derivatives and offered to draft the physical transition rules for Segregated (SG) and Mass Balance (MB). With his agreement the AOMG members worked on and submitted the first draft at the end of May 2012. The final version was approved by the RSPO Standing Committee Trade and Traceability in June 2013 and EB approved this in early July 2013.

Whilst an important milestone has been reached there is still more work to be done for physically certified oleochemicals and its derivatives to reach the end consumer. Many members of AOMG who have joined RSPO are now Supply Chain Certification System (SCCS) certified which means they are ready to supply oleochemicals made from RSPO certified sustainable palm oil. The member companies are


1)  Ecogreen Oleochemicals Group

2)  Emery Oleochemicals (M) Sdn Bhd

3)  FPG Oleochemicals Sdn Bhd

4)  IOI Oleochemicals Group

5)  KLK OLEO Group of Companies

6)  PT Musim Mas


Many AOMG members are also in the process of obtaining the SCCS certification and expect to be certified by the end of this year.


There is still a lot of work to be done by RSPO in educating the entire supply chain and the certifying bodies.

The products of AOMG members are mainly midstream with some downstream which means that our products will be used by one or more players along the supply chain before it reaches the end consumer. The players who want to claim that their products are RSPO-certified need to take several steps

(i)    register as a member with RSPO
(ii)   be SCCS certified
(iii)  at least 95% of all palm-derived components in their product is RSPO-certified
(iv)  apply for a license to use the appropriate RSPO Trademark

As the manufacture of oleochemicals and its derivatives is highly versatile, the processes appear to be complicated and some Certifying Bodies (CB) find that difficult to understand. AOMG can assist RSPO in educating CBs in its area of expertise viz midstream of the supply chain.

AOMG members are ready to supply products that are RSPO-certified for sustainable palm oil and those who wish to take such products should familiarize themselves with the requirements of RSPO.

AOMG benchmarks outside the industry for best practice

The 3rd AOMG Technical Workshop 2013 was held at Hyatt Regency Kuantan Resort from June 17 – 18, 2013 with the theme of waste minimization and safe handling of hydrogen gas. Unlike previous workshops the first day was a field trip to visit best in class companies. The workshop was attended by 20 participants from Indonesia and Malaysia and included production managers & engineers, maintenance engineers, safety and loss prevention leaders, SHE manager & superintendant, process engineer, manufacturing director, general manager and a COO.

The first company visited on Monday morning was BASF-PETRONAS Chemicals in Gebeng. The presentation and factory tour was led by Dato' Ir Jeffrey Khor Chooi Beng, General Manager - Operations Technical and Dr Azir Salleh, Manager – Environment. We learnt that BASF is people focussed and places their safety as priority. It is also very much into CSR with initiatives covering a radius of 25km of its operations. The Verbund concept lends itself to sustainability eg the ‘waste’ of one block is the feed for another block.  We were briefed on how the environment is managed with respect to water, air, noise and waste. Members discussed at length the challenges of totally reusing treated waste water that already met discharge standards.

In the afternoon participants visited the Air Products Malaysia hydrogen generation plant in Kuantan port. Mr Chin Jun Fu, the H2 Operations Manager, received us with several members of his team from the rest of Malaysia as well as Singapore. We were given a briefing and a factory tour. On the way back to the hotel participants visited a tourist spot viz the Batu Hitam beach and made a shopping stop for Kuantan’s famous seafood especially salted fish.
In the evening FPG Oleochemicals hosted a seafood BBQ dinner for participants at the ‘Coals on the beach’. Our thanks to FPG Oleochemicals.

Tuesday morning started with a briefing by the Air Products team on their capability, their operations and maintenance management as well as the safe handling of hydrogen gas.  Air Products is committed to be an industry leader in environmental, health and safety performance in managing their businesses. Mr Chin’s briefing included how they applied safety techniques such as Hazard and Operability (HAZOP) study, Safety Integrity Level (SIL) Assessment and Layer of Protection Analysis (LOPA) methodology. Mr Wong Fok Gee, Senior General Manager, PT Musim Mas facilitated the discussions that followed.

Ir Qua Kiat Seng, IChemE’s Industry Partnership Liaison then spoke on the need for passing on of knowledge to the younger generation which is a reason for the annual AOMG workshops. He showed that the issue is not unique to the oleochemical industry.  He referred to the quote “There is no new accidents in major hazards, it’s just new people making the old accidents.” He used the example of catastrophic incidents involving ammonium nitrate starting with Oppau in 1921 to West in 2013. He closed his talk by showing the competencies required of a professional process safety engineer.

After lunch Mr Ng Wooi Heong, Production Manager, Acidchem International, facilitated observations and discussions on the previous day’s visit to BASF-PETRONAS Chemicals before the workshop ended.

 First time participant, Rajesh Xavier, MPD Ester/Loss Elimination Program Owner, FPG Oleochemicals said, “It was a very rewarding learning experience for myself, especially on benchmarking sustainability-related practices at BPC against what is being implemented at FPG. The detailed briefing & discussion on H2 gas safe handling practices certainly helped to deepen my understanding on the subject, since it relates closely to the activities at FPG.

I have also managed to network with the participants from the oleochemical industry and learn more about their organizations.  This new found network would help greatly in terms of sharing best practices & other industry-relevant information in the industry.

Personally, I'm looking forward to future events organized by AOMG, be it technical workshops or seminars conducted locally.

Participants suggested for next year's workshop to be held in Medan to cover process safety techniques such as LOPA.

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AOMG Pushes on with HSE Best Practices

AOMG held its second successful technical workshop at Courtyard by Marriott in Bali, Indonesia from 16 - 17 July 2012 continuing its focus on improving HSE in members' plants.  There were 24 participants that included SHE Managers, Production Managers, Process Engineers, QC/QA Managers as well as General Managers and Executive Directors.

Mr Wong Fok Gee of PT Musim Mas led the session on process safety in fatty acid plants and Mr Abun Lie of PT Ecogreen led a similar session on fatty alcohol plants.  Mr Goh Eng Choor of Palm-Oleo Sdn Bhd led a session on liquid as well as solid by products sharing the ways in which these could be minimized.

Mr Vanit of Thai Oleochemicals discussed the importance of the Work Permit System whilst Encik Azhar of Pacific Oleochemicals spoke on Behavioural Based Safety.  Mr K S Qua shared tips on improving process safety communication with board members.  Sources of useful information were also shared.

Participants were treated to a BBQ dinner with a unique presentation at Tropical Bali Restaurant hosted by APOLIN.  Our thanks to APOLIN.

In summing up the workshop, Mr Goh Eng Choor who is the Chairman of the AOMG Technical Committee said that in exchanging best practices the oleochemical industry sector would benefit as a whole.  He would like to see such a healthy environment of openly sharing continue not only between companies but amongst the young and old.

Going forward participants made a number of suggestions for next year's workshop and these included a factory visit, communication skills, handling of hydrogen gas as well as a call for those who have not led sessions or participated previously to come forward.  It is likely that the country to host the 2013 workshop will be Malaysia.

Please click here to view the photo.

Mr Tan Kean Hua re-elected Chairman for another term

The AOMG held its 26th AGM on 29 May 2012 in Bangkok, Thailand.  In his address Mr Tan, AOMG Chairman (2010 - 2012) noted that AOMG had undertaken a lot of projects in the past year, the most notable of which was its taking the lead in drafting for RSPO the rules for physical transition of oleochemicals and derivatives.  The ongoing project is led by Mr Choong Wai Tuck.  This underlines the continuing support of AOMG members for RSPO.

AOMG ran a HAZOP study training course specially designed for the oleochemical industry for its members.  The highly successful course in Bangkok was attended by 25 members from all member countries viz Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines and Thailand.  It was opportunity for learning and understanding and for AOMG experts to share their knowledge and experience to ensure our industry maintains a high standard of process safety.

 Mr Tan welcomed Ms Lim Yee Mein as the new Statistics Chair as well as the Vice Chairman, Mr Tan I Tjhang.  The statistics compilation exercise (capacity) is not only used by members but referred to by governments and industry associations worldwide to determine industry performance and trends.  The meeting noted that there will be a tremendous increase in capacity in ASEAN over the next two years.

Going forward the Exco re-elected Mr Tan as Chairman for another term (2012 - 2014) and Mr Taveesak Taipitak as Vice-Chairman.  The day before the Technical Committee had elected Mr Goh Eng Choor as Chairman and Mr Non Siriprapapornchai as Vice-Chairman.  The Exco agreed to another technical workshop on process safety and sustainability which will be held in Bali, Indonesia from 16 - 17 July 2012.  The details of this will be announced soon.

Please click here to view photos.

AOMG Statistics Training 2012

The ASEAN Oleochemical Manufacturers Group (AOMG) was formed in 1986 to promote co-operation and coordination among the oleochemical manufacturers in the ASEAN region.  Among the objectives of AOMG is the compilation and dissemination of information of common concern as well as to provide facilities for consultation and exchange of views between and among members.  Agreement to participate in the AOMG Statistics is one of the pre-requisite of membership.  Credibiilty and reliability of information is necessary to determine industry performance and trends and in fulfilling AOMG objectives.  Towards this end, AOMG has drawn up the "AOMG Statistic Compilation Training Guide" for members to follow consistently.

 Ms Lim Yee Mein, Director, Natural Oleochemicals Sdn Bhd was elected AOMG Statistics Chairperson at the AOMG Interim Meeting on 14 November 2011.  Mr Tan I Tjhang, CFO of PT Soci Mas was elected deputy.

A statistics re-training was arranged for 30 April 2012 at the Renaissance Kuala Lumpur Hotel to facilitate understanding of the procedure and guidelines of the Statistics Compilation.  Mr MF Lok who was a previous chairperson was invited to conduct the training.  The training was attended by representatives from member companies mainly from Malaysia and Indonesia.

Ms Lim thanked Mr MF Lok for conducting the statistics re-training saying, "The challenge is to ensure all members to submit the statistical report within the quarterly deadlines.  This needs the commitment and co-operation from all AOMG members especially the senior financial manager."

Please click here to view the group photo.



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