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Our research into Biological Aerobic Respiration (BAR) Technology began in 2004. In 2007, a research team led by Mr. Prathapan Pillai began a field trial with Sime Darby, one of Malaysia’s largest Oil Palm producers. All the effluent and empty fruit bunches produced daily was directed to a three hectare site where the system was being implemented. Utilising 100% of the waste, the system was able to produce compost in 45 days. These results were unprecedented. Zero-waste technology in the Oil Palm Industry was now a reality.

Today, Sime Darby is implementing composting methodologies in mills throughout Malaysia. Nine of these use the BARformula process. Success with the world’s largest oil palm producer provided the much needed validation to introduce the technology to the rest of the Oil Palm industry.

The next step was to ensure that the process would be commercially viable. There was a lesson to be learnt from existing mechanical composting systems which required high capital expenditure. Although technically superior to its mechanical predecessor, microbial zero-waste technology had to keep its costs down. The Palm Oil industry would be reluctant in adopting a system, no matter how successful, if the costs were unreasonable.

The researchers were able to guarantee the industry that this technology would produce compost of acceptable quality. Based on industry standard fertiliser application rates, financial controllers estimated a 25% gross savings on fertiliser costs. They also found further savings in transport and labour costs of EFB (empty fruit bunch) application. Compost was about half the volume and weight of EFB and able to fertilise almost twice as much plantation area with only one application per year. The industry was further encouraged when the composting process received recognition as Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) compliant. This enables mill owners to earn dollars for every tonne of Methane reduced through the process.

In 2008, BARformula Sdn. Bhd. (Malaysia) began commercial operations. With a capital injection from private equity holders and an improved business model, the system came to be known as the BARformula Technology. A solution had arrived to one of the industry’s biggest inconveniences, without the need for capital investment.

Indonesian plantations became interested in the technology which rapidly converted into business. In 2009 PT BARformula, an Indonesian entity was formed. Today the BARformula Technology is being implemented at mills across Malaysia and Indonesia.


BARformula are oil palm bioremediation specialists. Our Technology converts 100% of the organic wastes from the palm oil mill into nutrient-rich compost, saving the plantations millions in fertiliser and effluent management costs.

Why we are a green organisation

BARformula is a pioneer in zero waste technology for the oil palm plantation sector. Our Technology converts 100% of the organic wastes from the palm oil mill into nutrient-rich compost (BARcompost), which is recycled back to the Oil Palm Plantation as a superior substitute for chemical fertilisers.

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