Tagging system for fruits and vegetables

Ministry of Agriculture and Agro-Based Industries will be implementing a tagging system based on a 3P scheme – grading, packaging and labeling starting next year said the deputy minister Chua Tee Yong.

This decision is made to ensure imported vegetables and fruits are inline with Malaysia Food Act 1983 and safe for public consumption said the deputy minister after chairing the dialog between local farmers, florists, fruit producers, Federal Agriculture Marketing Authority (FAMA) and Associated Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Malaysia (ACCCIM) at MCA headquarters in Jalan Ampang.

Malaysian vegetables and fruits exporters have to abide the importee’s regulation by the importing countries but we don’t do the same when it comes to the fruits and vegetables imported from overseas, he added.

“Hence some people are saying we are exporting the good stuffs while importing the sub-standard goods,” said the deputy minister.

Meanwhile, the local vegetables and fruit producers will be required to label their produce under the tagging system to ease traceability and to include vital information with the help of FAMA.

He also said that the vegetable and fruit producers agreed to adapt the new tagging system and requested the system to be simplified in order to keep the cost low.

(first row from left) FAMA senior director Ahmad Ishak, Chua with farmers, florists and fruits producers.

Engage non-malay in Pasar Tani

Meanwhile FAMA through the dialog has established a mechanism with the non-Malay farmers, florists and fruits producers to expand the market size of agricultural products especially through ‘Pasar Tani’ (agro market).

“Currently 95% of Pasar Tani’s vendors are bumiputras and we hope through this joint-effort, it can increase the number of non Malay farmers and attract more crowds, which will increase the farmer’s income,” said Chua.

The pilot project is to revive the pasar tani at the tourist-centered Taman Buaya, Air Keroh

8,677 entrepreneurs are currently involved in 411 Pasar Tani around the country. As of June 2010, the industry has contributed RM 2.8 million out from the projected RM 5.5 million revenue under the 9th Malaysia plan.