carpenter trading
Toboi Oil Mill  

The Toboi Oil Mill is a division of Coconut Products and is based in Rabaul, East New Britain Province. It commenced operation in 1952.


Coconut Products is the largest buyer of copra in Papua New Guinea. The main copra buying point is Toboi Mill which services the Gazelle peninsular area of East New Britain. Coconut Products also has offshore buying depots in Buka, Kavieng and Namatanai. Buying points are also operated along the coast of New Britain and New Ireland.

Toboi Oil Mill
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At Toboi, copra is supplied in bulk and is tipped straight into receival hoppers. At the depots, copra is received in bags which are stored and shipped to the mill in coastal freighters.

Copra is also brought to the mill in bags on small outboard motor boats from nearby islands and coastal areas.

Copra, which is the dried coconut kernel, contains 62% to 68% coconut oil. The better the method of drying the better the quality of oil extracted. Because of this, copra is graded and paid for according to grade. The three grades are Hot Air, FMS (Fair Merchantable Standard) and Smoke. Well dried copra would be classified as Hot Air Grade and would contain less than 6% moisture.

In a normal year Toboi Mill receives 65,000 tons of copra for processing.

The price of copra is determined by the world market price for coconut oil. This fluctuates like all commodities. As prices go up copra production booms but with low prices many farmers find it not worthwhile and stop production. Because of this copra intakes fluctuate considerably.

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Coconut Oil

With normal copra intakes Toboi Mill would export 40,000 tons of coconut oil per year.

Copra is passed through grinders, heated and is then forced through expellers to extract the oil. The oil is flitered to remove any solids and passed through activated carbon to improve the colour. No additives or solvents are used in the process.

Though there is a commodity price for coconut oil, the final price will depend on the colour and FFA (Free Fatty Acid) content. Both these properties result from the standard of copra purchased.

Because of the processing characteristics of Toboi copra it has an extremely low to zero Poly Aromatic Hydrocarbon (PAH) content. This is now a major factor for health conscious buyers.

The processed oil is forward sold to international buyers in 500 ton lots as it is produced. The oil is stored in large tanks and shipped monthly from Toboi Mill directly to Rotterdam where it is distributed onto the world market.

Coconut oil is used for a number of purposes including the production of foods, confectionary,cosmetics, soap and as a cooking oil. It also has potential as a bio fuel.

On Coconut Product's plantations, our tractors, generators and vehicles run on coconut oil in preference to diesel fuel.

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Coconut Meal

In a good year Toboi Mill produces 20,000 tons of coconut meal.

Coconut meal is used as a livestock feed supplement, it contains 22% protein and around 6% residual oil.

Some of the copra meal produced is used in country by Coconut Products and other live stock producers. Most is exported to Australia and New Zealand with a potential for the US market.

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