Should be food producer, not importer
By:Alexandra Lorna
Date:
SV& KCH-premier irsda-1006-gb (3)

KUCHING: Sarawak has the potential to become a major producer and exporter of food products.

This is part of preparations to handle the current food supply crisis, said Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg.

He said the state has vast land resources which are suitable to be developed for that purpose. At the same time it has a skilled workforce and experts in the field of modern agriculture.

“The problem we are facing now in Malaysia, including Sarawak, pertains to importing of food items from foreign countries.

“When we import food from abroad, our ringgit will be weak, food prices will also increase and the people will have to buy food at high prices.

“But then, our state has vast land; we can produce our own food without relying on imported food. Sarawak should be a food producer not the other way around in which we are now importing food from foreign countries,” he said.

 He said this in his speech at the launching ceremony of the Integrated Regional Samarahan Development Agency (IRSDA), here, yesterday.

Sarawak now is also facing problems on the price of chicken which also affects every household.

This issue, he said, was due to the lack of corn, as chicken feed and he added that it should not be a problem.

“Therefore, people should take the approach to take opportunities in agriculture such as corn cultivation.  If they say the land is not suitable, we ask for the help of our experts in the state to resolve this issue.

 “I will also ask UNIMAS Vice Chancellor Datuk Kadim Suaidi to help Sarawak set up a laboratory to recruit individuals involved in agriculture as part of UNIMAS students.

 “They (students) will be able to do their industrial training in this laboratory and learn more about modern farming,” he explained.

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