Palm kernel

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Palm kernel within a palm fruit.
Palm kernel nuts put out to dry

The palm kernel is the edible seed of the oil palm fruit. The fruit yields two distinct oils: palm oil derived from the outer parts of the fruit, and palm kernel oil derived from the kernel.[1]

The pulp left after oil is rendered from the kernel is formed into "palm kernel cake", used either as high-protein feed for dairy cattle or burned in boilers to generate electricity for palm oil mills and surrounding villages.


World War II British Empire palm kernel poster

Palm kernel cake is most commonly produced by economical screw press, less frequently via more expensive solvent extraction.[2]

Palm kernel cake

Palm kernel cake is a high-fibre, medium-grade protein feed best suited to ruminants.[3][4] Among other similar fodders, palm kernel cake is ranked a little higher than copra cake and cocoa pod husk,[5] but lower than fish meal and groundnut cake, especially in its protein value.

Composed of 16% fiber, palm kernel cake also has a high phosphorus-to-calcium ratio and contains such essential elements as magnesium, iron, and zinc.[6] The typical ration formulated for the feeding of dairy cattle consists of palm kernel cake (50%), molasses (5%), grass/hay (42%), limestone (1.5%), mineral premix (1%), and salt (0.5%), with trace element/vitamin premix.[7]

Palm kernel shells (PKS), a byproduct of palm kernel oil production, can be used for biofuel (for example, in the form of pellets).[8]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Oil Palm FAO Agricultural Services Bulletin-148, 2002, 60pg, ISBN 92-5-104859-2
  2. ^ Malaysian Palm Kernel Cake as Animal Feed Archived 2006-01-04 at the Wayback Machine Hishamuddin Mohd Aspar, 2001, Palm Oil Developments 34
  3. ^ Evaluation of Palm Kernel Meal and Corn Distillers Grains in Corn Silage-Based Diets for Lactating Dairy Cows Carvalho, Cabrita, Dewhurst, Vicente, Lopes, and Fonseca, 2006, Journal of Dairy Science Vol. 89, No. 7
  4. ^ Palm Kernel Cake as a supplement for fattening and dairy cattle in Malaysia FY Chin, 1992, FAO, Manado, Chapter 25
  5. ^ Nutritive value of palm kernel cake and cocoa pod husks for growing cattle Wong Hee Kum, Wan Zahari Mohamed, 1997, Journal of Tropical Agriculture and Food Science, Vol. 25, No. 1, ISSN 1394-9829
  6. ^ Quality and Characteristics of Malaysian Palm Kernel Cakes/Expellers Tang Thin Sue, 2001, Palm Oil Developments 34
  7. ^ Use of Palm Kernel Cake and Oil Palm By-Products in Compound Feed Archived 2006-01-04 at the Wayback Machine M Wan Zahari and A R Alimon, 2004, Palm Oil Developments 40
  8. ^ Eco-Business. "Can power from palm oil waste replace fossil fuels in coal-loving Asia?". Eco-Business. Retrieved 2021-04-05. {{cite web}}: |last= has generic name (help)