SITI Rahayu Abd Rashid showing reporters the various products of her company. Photo: Bernama

JOHOR BAHRU: When Siti Rahayu Abd Rashid was staying abroad, friends would ask her if there were easier ways to prepare traditional Malaysian food.

That was how the 41-yearold got the idea to start a spice cube business in 2016, creating the Aydeen cube brand together with her husband Ahyaludin Ab Wahab, 49.

Her firm, MyCuisine Qube Sdn Bhd, where she is executive director, was already producing curry powder, but the market was monopolised by multinationals, she said when met by Bernama recently.

Unusually, MyCuisine Qube’s initial focus was not on the domestic market but on Saudi Arabia, thanks to an offer from Lembaga Tabung Haji (TH) for the firm to supply food to Malaysian pilgrims in the Holy Land. That laid the foundation for the company to expand in Saudi Arabia and later to Australia, Brunei and Japan.

Only this year, she said, will it focus on the Malaysian market, where its products are currently only available in selected halal marts and through agents in Kedah, Kelantan, Johor Bahru, Kuala Lumpur and Selangor.

Siti Rahayu Abd Rashid showing reporters the various products of her company. Photo: Bernama

The company exports some 21,000 cubes (216 cartons) to Japan, where they are available at several supermarkets.

“The response has been very good as many of them like Malaysian food.

“Also, our cubes don’t have added preservatives but are made from natural ingredients that are dried using modern methods,” she said.

MyCube produces nine types of cubes — rendang, curry (chicken and fish), stock (chicken, beef and fish), tom yam, asam laksa and yellow curry, with the last two being especially popular.

More varieties are being developed, she noted.

MyCuisine is also exploring opportunities in Sri Lanka, the US, Vietnam, China and Singapore. It is looking for distributors in the US, where demand for halal food is on the rise although supply has yet to keep pace, she added. – Bernama