J Palm is a Liberian social enterprise founded in 2013 by Mahmud Johnson – who returned to help rebuild Liberia after he completed a university degree in the United States. The company pioneered a new model of processing and purchasing palm kernel oil from rural farmers, many in remote, hard to reach areas. J Palm brings mini-mills to farmers who have difficulty processing and transporting their palm oil harvest. The machines allow processing in one-sixteenth of the time required to do it manually, and extract additional oil from the hard, inner kernels, which normally are thrown away. The company buys oil on the spot, for farmers who choose to sell, and uses it to make a line of personal care products.
J Palm’s work to empower rural farmers in Liberia has won multiple awards and funding, including from Johnson&Johnson Innovation Africa.