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Project Archive

Sustainable Indonesian Patchouli Production (SIPP)

The Sustainable Indonesian Patchouli Production (SIPP) program aims to reduce the environmental impact of patchouli production and improve the livelihoods of patchouli producing communities.

Patchouli cultivation and distillation is a source of income for thousands of smallholder producers and their families across Indonesia. Indonesia produces over 80% of the world’s patchouli oil with around 75% of national production coming from the island of Sulawesi.

Lack of understanding about best agricultural practices means that farmers are not producing optimally. After several years, farmers that do not apply best practices see their production fall significantly due to soil nutrient depletion and pest and disease outbreaks. Additionally, distillation machines are not optimal and burn excessive fire wood. This means less income for the patchouli oil producers due to rising fuel costs when wood becomes scarcely available.

The Project

SIPP is funded by the Givaudan Foundation and up until March 2018, received public co-funding from the Millennium Challenge Account – Indonesia. Collaborating with Givaudan, the world’s largest flavors and fragrances company, ensures that program beneficiaries have a reliable off-taker that is committed to responsible sourcing.

SIPP improves the sustainable supply of patchouli by:

  • Promoting sustainable distillation methods and technology to reduce fuelwood consumption;
  • Improving the living standards of beneficiaries engaged in the patchouli supply chain, through training on Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), Good Nutritional Practices (GNP), and Good Financial Practices (GFP).

The partnership will benefit all players in the patchouli value chain:

  • Patchouli farmers will increase their leaf yield and benefit from nutritional and financial training;
  • Still owners and farmers that distil themselves will benefit from using less fuelwood, reducing the wood needed per cycle and increasing profits;
  • Givaudan will benefit from an increased supply of sustainably-sourced patchouli oil.


This project will introduce simple and effective measures for increasing producers’ income while reducing environmental impact. The prospect of increased production gives producers an incentive to use what is shared through the intervention as it will be in their economic best-interest. This is the key to making sure that interventions introduced in an agricultural development program are sustainable.

Direct beneficiaries of the project

During the pilot phase of the program, SIPP has benefited:

  • 270 Still Operators trained on Good Distillation Practices (GDP)
  • Approximately 930 Farmer Households trained on GAP, GNP, and GFP.

The project is aware of gender sensitivity importance:

  • Involving at least 30% of women in GAP training: Patchouli cultivation/distillation is a predominantly male activity, however, women are often responsible for general farm maintenance and post-harvest practices. SIPP supports gender mainstreaming so the roles of women are recognized.



  • SIPP assisted five patchouli distilations retrofitted in North Kolaka District with a new design of furnace and oil separator. This prototype reduces fuel consumption up to 40% and helps distillers to produce better quality oil through the use of an oil separator.
  • One owner in Kolaka Utara adopted the technology and now supports four others to apply it.
  • SIPP produced 2 modules of GAP for smallholders farmers and GDP (Good Distilation Practice) for distillers specifically for patchouli.
  • An additional GAP-day of training was held on the topics of sustainable fuelwood planting and child labour prevention.
  • SIPP improves safety in the use of pesticide by delivering safety trainings to 931 farmers. The module has been incorporated into the main curriculum of GAP for patchouli.    
  • SIPP delivered trainings to farmers, extension workers and village officials: 1.125 on GAP, 1.071 on GNP, 1.122 on GFP, 344 on GDP.              


Project files

Project countries

  • Indonesia

Project duration

2017 - 2019


  • Givaudan Foundation

Working area