NEITHER WONDER CROP NOR CINDERELLA PLANT.
Jatropha is a non-food energy feedstock with a compratively high oil yield. It can be grown on marginal and semi-arid land and has a short generation time. Jatropha nuts are tree borne oil seeds that provide a source for rich biofuels with a high calorific value. From the inedible Jatropha nut comes Jatropha oil, a non-food type of biofuel. Crude Jatropha oil offers a sustainable and scalable source of energy at a commercially viable price. What makes Jatropha so unique is its high-energy efficiency relative to its low input and cultivation costs. After all, it grows on marginal lands and produces one of the highest yields of all oilseed plants in the world.
However, Jatropha is still in its infancy and requires care and attention. The plant is not yet fully domesticized.
To unlock its true potential it requires the right combination of high perfoming cultivars, agronomic practices, plantation methodology and other vital ingredients.
With the right formula in place, Jatropha seeds will prove resilient against diseases and poor soil conditions. Because the Jatropha tree can grow on inferior soil, infertile land is simultaneously upgraded and rehabilitated for usage. Jatropha plantations thus play an important role in the reforestation and reclaiming of derelict tracts of land in developing economies, providing real income in regions with an impoverished populace.
Jatropha offers the best possible proposition of all biofuel crops as it is a toxic crop that does not compete with food production. Jatropha actually augments the food chain because food crops may be interbred between the trees on the plantations. A well balanced intercropping scheme enhances a symbiotic and complimentary plant relationship to the benefit of both, food and fuel crops. Moreover, Jatropha generates very effective organic fertilizers as a by-product.