Pepper board looking into allocating S’wak land for pepper industry development
KUCHING (Aug 25): The Malaysian Pepper Board (MPB) is mulling to have state land allocated for pepper industry development, said Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities Datuk Zuraida Kamaruddin.
Speaking at the launch of the DAKN2030 Sektor Lada at a hotel here on Wednesday, she informed that the request for state land is part of the 2030 Pepper Sector’s National Agriculture Commodity Policy (DAKN2030Sektor Lada).
“MPB has to work harder to ensure that the pepper industry is among the sectors that generate income for the nation. My ministry is hoping that pepper from the agri-commodity sector will continue to contribute to the national economy,” she said.
She pointed out that Malaysia is now the fifth largest producer of pepper in the world and its pepper export will be forever growing because of great global demand.
“I have been to overseas for the agri-commodity roadshow this year. The people whom I met had confirmed that the quality of Malaysian pepper is among the best in the world,” she said.
“Therefore we must find opportunities to market Malaysian pepper products. And if we can meet their demand, the price of pepper has the potential to rise,” she added.
She then mentioned that a company called Saraspice would be moving independently to market Sarawak pepper products.
Therefore, she hoped MPB and Saraspice synergise their collaboration to strengthen the national pepper marketing strategies.
The agri-commodity sector also has to be further developed by the government despite the various challenges, for the benefit of smallholders.
“We will also ensure that the industry’s stakeholders be afforded the benefits of incentives and government policies,” she said.
Up to the middle of 2022, the pepper industry has recorded an export growth of RM94.3 million compared to RM61.9 million in the same period last year.
During the excellence award presentation held in conjunction with the DAKN2030 Sektor Lada launch, 27 MPB staff and 23 associates were recognised for their past services and contributions.
Among those present at the event were Deputy Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities Datuk Willie Mongin and MPB chairman Baharuddin Mokhsen.