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Over half a billion ringgit to ensure food supply: Hajiji
Published on: Tuesday, February 13, 2024
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Over half a billion ringgit to ensure food supply: Hajiji
Hajiji with Shahelmey and members of the Putatan Farmers Organisation.
CHIEF Minister Datuk Seri Haji Hajiji Haji Noor assured that the State Government would step up efforts to increase yields and quality of agricultural produce to ensure adequate food supply in the State.

He said the Agriculture, Fisheries and Food Industry Ministry allocated RM553.07 million for the agriculture, fisheries and food industry sectors in this year’s budget to boost Sabah’s self-sufficiency level.

“Various initiatives and innovations have been introduced and implemented through crop development, aquaculture, breeding and agropreneur development programmes,” he said at the meet and greet programme with members of the Putatan Farmers Organisation at the Mobile Food Kiosk area in Putatan on Feb 4.

The Chief Minister said the State Government will continue to support the Farmers Organisations given their crucial role in the development of the State’s food industry.

Nonetheless, he said respective Farmers Organisations must take the initiative to diversify their economic activities to improve their members’ socioeconomic status.

“Not just in Putatan, in fact, all members of the Farmers Organisations in the State must diversify and venture into the downstream industry. Farmers cannot just produce raw materials for the market, but instead ought to diversify their output to meet market demand. Take banana and pineapple, for example, it can be processed into snacks,” he said.

Hajiji said exploration of the downstream industry is important since the country still imports a certain amount of food from abroad to meet local consumption.

“By exploring such opportunities, Farmers Organisations will be able to improve their family’s socioeconomic status,” he said.

Hajiji said Putatan may not be able to have big-scale agricultural commodity activity due to its relatively small size compared to others in the State but with its close proximity to Kota Kinabalu City, the Putatan Farmers Organisation will have the opportunity to be a player in the agro-food value chain marketing industry.

“I hope more members of the Farmers Organisation will venture into the agro-food businesses by obtaining produce from other districts and processing them into marketable products for the Kota Kinabalu market.

“Find ways and opportunities to work with the Local Authorities or private sector and create a smart partnership in all aspects of the agro-food value chain sector,” he said.

The Chief Minister also welcomed the setting up of the Peladang Outlet at Kampung Meruntum, Putatan, which he believed would indirectly contribute to the creation of more jobs and business opportunities for the farming community in Putatan. 

Also present were Works Minister Datuk Ir Shahelmey Yahya, who is also Putatan Member of Parliament and Tanjung Keramat Assemblyman and Putatan Farmers Organisation Chairman Datuk Seri Arsit Sedi. 

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