IPC Admin 01/01/2018 INDONESIA3955

Indonesia, officially the Republic of Indonesia (Indonesian: Republik Indonesia), is a country in Southeast Asia and Oceania. Indonesia is an archipelago comprising approximately 17,508 islands. It has 33 provinces with over 238 million people, and is the world\'s fourth most populous country. Indonesia is a republic, with an elected legislature and president. The nation\'s capital city is Jakarta. The country shares land borders with Papua New Guinea, East Timor, and Malaysia. Other neighboring countries include Singapore, Philippines, Australia, and the Indian territory of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Indonesia is a founding member of ASEAN and a member of the G-20 major economies. The Indonesian economy is the world\'s seventeenth largest economy by nominal GDP and fifteenth largest by purchasing power parity.

The Indonesian archipelago has been an important trade region since at least the 7th century, when Srivijaya and then later Majapahit traded with China and India. Local rulers gradually absorbed foreign cultural, religious and political models from the early centuries CE, and Hindu and Buddhist kingdoms flourished. Indonesian history has been influenced by foreign powers drawn to its natural resources. Muslim traders brought Islam, and European powers brought Christianity and fought one another to monopolize trade in the Spice Islands of Maluku during the Age of Discovery. Following three and a half centuries of Dutch colonialism, Indonesia secured its independence after World War II. Indonesia\'s history has since been turbulent, with challenges posed by natural disasters, corruption, separatism, a democratization process, and periods of rapid economic change.

Across its many islands, Indonesia consists of distinct ethnic, linguistic, and religious groups. The Javanese are the largest -and the politically dominant- ethnic group. Indonesia has developed a shared identity defined by a national language, ethnic diversity, religious pluralism within a majority Muslim population, and a history of colonialism and rebellion against it. Indonesia\'s national motto, "Bhinneka Tunggal Ika" ("Unity in Diversity" literally, "many, yet one"), articulates the diversity that shapes the country. Despite its large population and densely populated regions, Indonesia has vast areas of wilderness that support the world\'s second highest level of biodiversity. The country is richly endowed with natural resources, yet poverty remains widespread.

Pepper in indonesia

In Indonesia, pepper has grown since the days before the colonial period. It became a high-value commodity after European colonist entered Indonesia in early 1500 BC. Pepper is a small holder estate crop and labor intensive commodity mainly cultivated in Lampung for black, Bangka Belitung and Kalimantan for white pepper. Pepper is also cultivated in Sulawesi, Java and other areas in Sumatera Island. Currently, pepper plantation in Indonesia is estimated around 120,000 hectares, decreased gradually from more than 150,100 hectares in 1990speriod, involving around 500,000 farmers.

In the last ten years, pepper production in Indonesia is gradually decreasing due to a number of constrains in cultivation which have not been solved, such as foot rot diseases, viral and pest and climatic changes. In 2016, production and export of pepper in Indonesia was around 65,000 Mt and 42,500 Mt repectively, showing a significant decrease of 19% and 27% from production and export achieved in 2015.

Area (ha) 113,002 117,000 113,663
Production (mt) 58,000 75,000 61,150
Export (mt) 38,446 53,100 49,700
Export Earnings (USD\'000) 132,493 430,141 299,170
Import (mt) 1,394 2,759 2,821
Consumption (mt) 15,700 22,000 17,770

Area and production

Indonesia produces black and white pepper. Black pepper is mostly produced in Lampung and known as Lampung black pepper and white pepper is traditionally produced in Bangka Belitung and known as Muntok white pepper. Est Kalimantan and Sulawesi also produce white pepper, mainly for local consumption. Other important producing areas are West Kalimantan, Bengkulu and South Sumatera.

Black pepper in Lampung is mainly produced in the districts of East Lampung and North Lampung. Other districts such as Way Kanan, Tanggamus and West Lampung also produces significant quantity of black pepper. In Bangka Belitung, all districts in this province produces white pepper.

Currently pepper area under pepper cultivation in Indonesia is around 120,000, decreased from more than 150,000 hectares in 1990s. In addition to the problem of pest and disease, low price in early 2000 has reduced spirit of farmer to maintain garden. They changed some of their garden to other profitable commodity like rubber, palm oil, cassava etc. Relaxation of tin mining regulation in Bangka in early 2000 has reduced pepper area significantly in Bangka. Farmers preferred to work in tin mining and neglected pepper garden to get better immediate cash money.

Good price in the last few years has encouraged farmers to replant and rejuvenate pepper plant. However, due to limited available of good planting material and un-favorable weather condition is the output was not so encouraging. During 2016 production of pepper in Indonesia was around 75,000 Mt, a decrease of 6% when compared to 80,000 Mt in 2015, the highest production achieved in the last ten years. The decrease was mainly due to unfavorable weather condition of elnino phenomenon occurred in 2015/2016. Good harvest was also experienced at the level of 75,000 Mt in 2012. Production of black pepper in 2016 decreased from 49,000 Mt in 2015 to 45,000 Mt in 2016; while for white pepper the decrease was marginal, supported by a number of young pepper plant which has begin to produce in 2016.

Almost all pepper from Lampung (Lampung Black pepper ) and Bangka Belitung (Muntok White pepper) is for export; while pepper from other producing areas are traded internally and inter island mostly for local consumption.

Development of are and production of pepper in Indonesia in the last ten years is shown as under.


During 2016 Indonesia has shipped 53,100 Mt of pepper, valued at US$ 430.1 million. Out of this a volume of 32,100 Mt was black and the balance (21,000 Mt) was white pepper. Export in 2016 represented a decrease of 9% from the export of 58,075 achieved in 2015. Black pepper decreased by 17%, while for white pepper increased by 4%. In term of value, export earnings from pepper in 2016 decreased by 22% from the highest realized in 2015 at US$ 548 million to US$ 430.1 million in 2016. Compared to the average export of 49,700 Mt during the last decade, export in 2016 was 10% higher in volume and 44% in value.

Traditional market of Indonesia's pepper was the United States of America, absorbing around 40% of pepper from Indonesia. In the last four years however, export of pepper from Indonesia to the United States has decreased from 23,000 Mt in 2012 to 15,000 Mt in 2013 and 6,100 Mt in 2014. In 2016 export of Indonesia to the USA was 8,5,00 Mt.

In the last two years, Viet Nam was the main destination absorbing more than 35% of Indonesia's pepper export. Other important destinations for Indonesian pepper are India and Singapore. Netherlands and Germany also imported significant quantity of pepper, particularly white pepper from Indonesia. In 2015, Viet Nam imported significant quantity of 22,650 Mt of pepper from Indonesia (15,900 Mt of black and 6,750 Mt of white pepper), recording a 40% of total pepper exported in the year and in 2016 a volume of 19,300 Mt (10,400 Mt of black and 8,900 Mt of white pepper) was also shipped to Viet Nam.

Yearly export of black and white pepper from Indonesia during 2017 - 2016

Yearly export of whole and ground pepper from Indonesia during 2017 - 2016

Export of whole pepper from Indonesia to top ten country of destination in metric ton


Besides export, Indonesia also imports pepper mainly from Vietnam. In the last ten years average import of pepper by Indonesia was 2,650 Mt. Significant quantity of pepper imported by Indonesia was in 2014 at the volume of 6,000 Mt.

Import of pepper by Indonesia during the last ten year is shown in the following table.


Pepper price development in Indonesia is mainly influenced by price development in Vietnam, the largest producing and exporting countries.


Information on the projection of pepper production for the future 3-5 years is not available. However, observing the increased area of pepper in the last few years, it is predicted that production of pepper will increase further, subject weather situation is favorable. If the situation becomes reality, abandoned pepper supply will take place and continuous price decrease has to be anticipated.

Main factor affecting production

Pest and diseases

  • Foot rot disease
  • Yellow disease
  • Stem borer
  • Pepper bug
  • Blossom bug
  • Climate changes


Black and white pepper are the main products in traditional trade from Indonesia. Pepper processing is done at farm level using traditional method. To improve quality, some efforts have been done by improving traditional method such as constructing small-scale equipment for processing which could be applied at farm level, and promote product sterilization.

Producing black pepper is taken from fully developed berries (6-7 months after flowering), having a dark green color and very solid content. To get uniformly dark color, some farmer stack the berries in a gunny or plastic bag for a few days (2-4 days), The berries separated from spikes by hand or foot, then immediately spread out on plastic or bamboo mats and dried in sun for 5 to 7 days depend on the climatic condition.

White pepper is prepared from fully mature berries getting yellowish to reddish in color (8-9 months after flowering) The berries are packed in a plastic or gunny bags, soaked in slow running water for 8-12 days. The sacks are turned around after having 5 days of soaking. The skin (pericarp) of the berries then is separated using hand or foot, followed by washing and dried on plastic or bamboo mats in the sun for 3-5 days.

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