The Philippines may be forced to import as much as 100 metric tons of palm kernel per month to supply manufacturers of soap and personal-care products with necessary oleochemicals. A major local producer of fatty acids, Cocochem, has been off-line since a fire two years ago. Meanwhile, Dean Lao of the Philippine Oleochemical Manufacturers Association suggests the nation should extend its focus to coconut-oil byproducts such as glycerin.

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