JELEBU, Sept 24 — The Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute (MARDI) is targeting to supply selected fruit and vegetable seedlings to farmers with agricultural land area of 200 hectares (494 acres) by the end of this year.
Director-general Datuk Dr Mohamad Zabawi Abdul Ghani said the seedlings to be given free, were for farmers who legally own the land or occupying a leased or rented property, while the crops would include durian, starfruit and sweet potatoes.
He said the farmers would be given guidance by MARDI, from the first stage of planting until the end when the project bears fruit, throughout the four-year period.
“However, this project will only be given to farmers who are genuinely interested and willing to comply with the standard operating procedures (SOP) set by MARDI.
“The farmers will only be given one selected crop or vegetable for cultivation and for now, we have identified the farmers who will be involved,” he told reporters after a food basket presentation by the Agriculture and Food Industries Ministry (MAFI) here today.
Also present were MAFI Deputy Minister 1 Datuk Seri Ahmad Hamzah and Federal Territories Deputy Minister Datuk Seri Jalaluddin Alias.
Meanwhile Mohamad Zabawi said MAFI was also targeting to get farmers to cultivate 1,000 hectares of land using clones to be supplied by MARDI in 2025.
He added that various types of fruit crops including pomelos would be planted on 250 hectares of land owned by MARDI in Simpang Durian to boost the country’s local fruit industry, apart from making Jelebu synonymous with pomelos.
Earlier, Ahmad presented MAFI Prihatin food baskets to 350 recipients around Jelebu who were affected following the COVID-19 pandemic besides donating 100 fruit seedlings to them.
Source: BERNAMA News Agency