KUCHING: The price of black and white pepper has increased by 60 percent in recent months.
Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Datuk Dr Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali said the increase could be due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Before Covid-19, we would always see the price drop but now, one tonne of white pepper costs RM21,000 while black pepper is priced RM12,000 per tonne.
“I believe this increase can be a stimulus for pepper farmers to further develop the industry,” he said.
Mohd Khairuddin disclosed that since 2020, he had allocated RM16.11 million to smallholders in the form of agricultural inputs.
“The allocation is given to help those who are heavily affected by the Covid-19 pandemic under the first stimulus package.
“For this year, we will continue what we have been doing and apply for allocation under the 12th Malaysia Plan (RMK-12).
“For us, agricultural input is crucial for pepper farmers. This input will be provided by both the Malaysian Pepper Board and Agriculture Department Sarawak.”
Mohd Khairuddin revealed that last year, Malaysia exported 8,000 tonnes of pepper while this year, it was expected to increase to 10,000 tonnes.