Meeting the Challenges of Jatropha’s Commercial Viability

November 30, 2007 | Comments Off on Meeting the Challenges of Jatropha’s Commercial Viability

Jatropha Curacas and its derivates including Jatropha biodiesel have been under the spotlight due to their potential to solve the world’s energy crisis. There is more than enough reason to be enthusiastic about Jatropha’s potential as a biodiesel feedstock. However, Jatropha’s commercial viability still remains in question, as there are still many inherent problems associated with Jatropha’s agronomy, Jatropha seeds, Jatropha oil, and Jatropha oil extraction and processing, for which research is still ongoing.

jatrophaThe success of Jatropha hinges upon a greater understanding of the plant, and these challenges so as to meet them and defeat them.

Amongst the challenges to the commercial viability of Jatropha are issues surrounding Jatropha’s agronomy. Jatropha has been proven to grow abundantly in the wild, but it has never been properly ‘domesticated’. What do I mean by this?

Jatropha yields are not predictable. Claims of yields exceeding 15 tons a hectare and more modest claims of 2 tons a hectare can leave the investor confused over the real figures.

There is also a lack of a proper definition on the ideal conditions suited for the growth of Jatropha. With claims that Jatropha can grow in a desert, in cool climes and in degraded land, there is a need for more awareness of research being done into the agronomy of Jatropha to determine the ideal climatic conditions to ensure maximum yields.

In addition to this, the potential environmental impacts of large-scale Jatropha cultivation are not properly understood at all; with more developing countries implementing Jatropha cultivation as a solution to rural poverty, the need to understand Jatropha’s long term impact on the environment is critical to ensure sustainable development.

A lack of understanding and knowledge of the basic agronomics, coupled by a premature push to cultivate Jatropha might result in unproductive agriculture, and the tremendous potential of Jatropha might remain unfulfilled.

In addition to this, there are other challenges to Jatropha’s commercial viability, including challenges of storing and processing Jatropha Oil. As Jatropha oil is highly acidic, it has the tendency to degrade quickly if not handled properly through the supply chain. The degradation of the oil will reduce its commercial value considerably, and increase the cost of processing it. Similarly, Jatropha seeds also have the problem of degrading if not carefully stored and handled from the moment they are picked.

It makes sense that a bio-diesel entrepreneur should focus on the building up relationships with experts in the field, who can provide them with the latest updates on Agronomy findings, as well as other strategic development strategies for the Jatropha cultivation and Biodiesel manufacturing ambitions.

This is why you should be at JATROPHAWORLD 2008!
JATROPHAWORLD 2008 is the summit that everyone who is thinking about investing in Jatropha, who have already invested in Jatropha and who are currently involved with Jatropha projects right now must attend!

Register today, and evaluate for yourself, the commercial potential of Jatropha, and find out new technological developments and findings, which will soon make these challenges a thing of the past.

Is Jatropha The New Wonder Feedstock For Biodiesel? New White Paper Reveals All.

November 28, 2007 | Comments Off on Is Jatropha The New Wonder Feedstock For Biodiesel? New White Paper Reveals All.

The position paper ‘Sustainable Biodiesel Feedstock. Jatropha: Strategic Option’ by Dr. R. Rajagopal is being released in line with the JatrophaWorld 2008 conference which is to be held in Jakarta on 23 and 24 January 2008. The paper endeavors to answer several questions about the Biodiesel Industry one of which is whether Jatropha is the solution to the Biofuel food or fuel dilemma. This is the dilemma of whether biofuel crops are taking over too much land needed to feed the world’s hungry. This vital paper, released by KnowGenix, is available for free download.

jatrophacover200px.jpgSINGAPORE, November 28, 2007 – The JatrophaWorld 2008 Conference (, to be held in Jakarta, Indonesia on 23-24 January 2008, is being organized by Centre for Management Technology (CMT). In line with JatrophaWorld 2008, KnowGenix, a Knowledge Partner of CMT, has released a position paper called ‘Sustainable Biodiesel Feedstock. Jatropha: Strategic Option’.

Author of the position paper, Dr. R. Rajagopal of KnowGenix, explains “the biofuel business is a complex web continuously reacting to the traditional oil business, as rising oil prices spur demand for biofuels.” The focus is now on non food crops with Jatropha rediscovering itself as the new pin up boy of alternative energy industry proponents. Contemporary trends across the world indicate a pronounced shift towards Jatropha as a more viable and sustainable feedstock for biodiesel compared to other food based crops.

“The worldwide development of biofuels has raised a myriad of issues by stakeholders. Complex trade-offs are demanded by the production, distribution, and utilization of biofuels and its feedstocks. Besides, the biofuel economics has become so location specific for its sustainability that it rules out the possibility of common approaches,” said Dr Rajagopal.

The position paper attempts to answer several questions about Jatropha. These include:

  • Is Jatropha really the best among energy crops and does it leave the least environmental footprint?
  • What are the impacts of large scale Jatropha plantations being planned in developing nations to feed the energy demands of the western world?
  • How does the Jatropha economics work for the developing nations?
  • To what extent is it more conducive in reducing GHG emissions?
  • Is Jatropha cultivation and propagation sustainable globally to feed the needed market demand?
  • Is biotechnology the answer to optimize Jatropha cultivation?

Those interested in Jatropha and biofuels are encouraged to download a complimentary copy of ‘Sustainable Biodiesel Feedstock. Jatropha: Strategic Option’ at

The questions the paper endeavors to answer and other questions will be expanded on at JatrophaWorld 2008.

The JatrophaWorld 2008 organizer, Centre for Management Technology (CMT), has brought together the best expertise and brightest brains to discuss and analyze the present and future dynamics of Jatropha. The companies represented include Germany’s Fraunhofer Institute of Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology, Singapore’s Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory, Malaysia’s Asiatic Centre for Genomic Technologies Sdn. Bhd., the Indonesian Center for Estate Crops Research & Development (ICERD) as well as India’s Naturol Bioenergy Limited and Labland Biodiesel Private Limited. Delegates will be able to expand their knowledge about Jatropha and alternative energy and also network with the crème de la crème of the Jatropha industry.

JatrophaWorld 2008 is going to be the most important conference of 2008 for those who want to keep abreast of the latest developments in the agriculture, processing, socio-economics and financing of Jatropha as an alternative energy source. Those wanting more information or who are vitally interested in Jatropha as a feedstock for Biodiesel and alternative energy must visit While there, they can register for this essential conference.

About Centre for Management Technology
CMT is dedicated to the provision of the latest global technology and business information in the chemical industry through high profile conferences focusing on renewable, liquid energy sources. CMT has organized industry specific conferences on Liquid Natural Gas, and LPG, ground breaking summit on technologies like Coal to Liquids, Gas to Liquids, and Bio-mass to Liquid, and alternative energy or future fuels forums like Biodiesel, Biofuels and Ethanol. This has established CMT as the market leader in promoting this nascent industry as an alternative global powerhouse.

About KnowGenix

KnowGenix a growth strategy service firm with Chemicals, Materials and Energy practices is a Knowledge Partner of CMT. The firm researches business and technology trends in petrochemicals, fine, specialty and life science chemicals value chain as well as in materials and energy. It assists clients with growth strategy services through customized, competitive and timely solutions covering Asia, M.E., EU and US geographies in collaboration with its global partners. To learn more please visit

Divya Sangam
Marketing Executive
Phone: 65-63469140

Jatropha’s Socio-Economic Impact Combating Poverty

November 27, 2007 | Comments Off on Jatropha’s Socio-Economic Impact Combating Poverty

Jatropha is largely being perceived as one of the solutions to problems of poverty. With increasing international interest in this plant, the possibilities are exciting. Jatropha oil and Jatropha biodiesel can be used for rural electrification, transport, and for stationary engines for shaft power (like multi-functional platforms). Jatropha cultivation is said to be able to protect the environment, as it protects and upgrades degraded soils. In addition to this, the net carbon dioxide emissions from the Jatropha cycle are reportedly zero. Jatropha is now touted as a motor for economic development in rural areas and a tool to alleviate rural poverty by governments and Non-Governmental Organizations alike.

jatrophaAccording to the United Nations, almost half of the world’s population lives on less than $2 a day. In the mean time, the developed and developing world’s energy needs have been expanding exponentially. The high cost and inaccessibility of fossil fuels, leaves approximately 2 billion people worldwide without reliable energy sources, without refrigeration, basic communication, heat, or even light.

Statistics show that two-thirds of the population in the developing world, where poverty is at its peak, derives their incomes from agriculture.

Put in this context, Jatropha has enormous potential to change their situation for the better.

Farmers have traditionally cultivated the Jatropha Curcas tree to contain livestock. They have also used the oil for lighting lamps and manufacturing medicinal soaps.

With the demand for Jatropha biodiesel, there will be increasingly widespread commercial cultivation of Jatropha.

Farmers could easily cultivate the tree, which reportedly produces five to six harvests of seeds annually from its third year. The tree is also reported to have a fifty year lifespan according Chinese officials, who have been working with the UNDP to launch “Green Poverty Reduction in China” a major project aimed a reducing poverty in China’s poorest in the Guizhou, Sichuan and Yunan provinces in southwest China.

There are many who believe that the cycle of poverty can be broken by Jatropha Cultivation, as this dedicated crop has a huge potential for replication world -wide, with the potential for improving the livelihood of many more of the world’s poorest.

At the community level, it is argued that farmers who produce dedicated energy crops can increase their incomes and grow their own supply of affordable and reliable energy for their own internal needs.

At the national level, cultivating biofuel crops will generate new industries, new technologies, new jobs and new markets.

At the same time, producing more biofuels will reduce energy expenditures and allow developing countries to put more of their resources into health, education and other services for their neediest citizens.

But this is all a very pretty picture that is still in the process of being realized.

If one scans the investments into Jatropha today, it is aimed at large commercial cultivation, as doubts prevail over the feasibility of small-scale Jatropha cultivation.

So, can Jatropha really end poverty?

With dedicated poverty reduction programs organized by governments and NGOs, the easy cultivability of Jatropha and increasing demand for Biodiesel, it seems that Jatropha can indeed be a viable solution to improve the standard of living of the world’s poorest.

However, this still remains an issue of debate, with detractors pointing out that Jatropha cannot be cultivated on a small scale and its yields are unstable. In addition to this, fears remain over the use of valuable water resources to ensure optimum yields from the Jatropha tree.

Discussion about the socio-economic impact on Jatropha will be on the agenda at JATROPHAWORLD 2008, a conference which brings together on a single platform, the best expertise to discuss and analyze the present and future dynamics of JATROPHA from a technological socio-economic angle.

At JATROPHAWORLD 2008, you will be able to engage our panel of experts in active debate and discussion about Jatropha’s potential to alleviate poverty, and weigh both the positive and negative impacts of widespread Jatropha Cultivation.

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to be a part of this authoritative summit on Jatropha.