PUTRAJAYA – Malaysia will export 300 tonnes of Harumanis mangoes to China starting mid-May as an initial step to promote the local agriculture product to a larger market, said Director-General of Agriculture Datuk Jamal Harizan Yang Razali.
He said this would be undertaken by a joint venture between Koperasi Kakitangan Jabatan Pertanian Perlis Bhd and Kayazon Bhd, which signed a memorandum of understanding on April 22.
“The export of Harumanis mangoes to China and Hong Kong will be done in stages to reach 300 tonnes over five years, and it will be our maiden attempt to promote another premium local agriculture product in China,” he explained during a Twitter session with the media here today.
He added that this year, Harumanis mango peak season is expected to begin from mid-May until June, with a projected weekly output of 350 tonnes.
Meanwhile, in line with efforts to boost the value of durians as the country’s new source of wealth, Jamal Harizan said the Agriculture Department would soon start to graft durian kampung trees to produce the premium types of durian.
“This follows durian kampung producers’ gripe that they are not benefiting from the higher durian prices; therefore, the department will implement a farm transformation through the method of grafting on mature durian trees.
“In two to three years’ time, the trees are expected to bear premium-type and high-quality fruits,” he said, adding that about 25 per cent of the 66,000 hectares of durian plantations comprised the premium-type durians such as Musang King.
On the country’s ban on imports of rockmelons from Australia following a fatal listeria outbreak, Jamal Harizan said it was timely for domestic producers to promote local rockmelons.
“In terms of quality and taste, there is not much difference between the rockmelons grown in Malaysia and those from Australia. In fact, local rockmelons are sweeter and cheaper compared with the ones imported from several other countries.
“Therefore, during the ban, we should take the opportunity to promote local rockmelons among consumers in this country,” he added. – BERNAMA