KUCHING: Sarawak produced 720 metric tonnes of beef valued at RM25.2 million last year but imported 6,525mt of the same worth RM165 million.
Our self-sufficiency level is 10 per cent but we are exporting buffaloes to Brunei, valued at RM6.9 million, said Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg at the 18th Australasian Animal Production Congress (AAAP) 2018 here Wednesday.
His text of speech was read by Deputy Chief Minister and Minister of Modernisation of Agriculture, Native Land and Regional Development Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah.
Abang Johari said Sarawak was all set to increase the self sufficiency level of beef and mutton to 50 per cent and 70 per cent respectively by 2030, apart from being a net exporter of fresh milk.
To achieve this, Good Animal Husbandry Practices including using suitable breeds, precise nutrition and conducive housing environment for animals as well as the use of innovative technologies such as Artificial Insemination (AI) and Embryo Transfer will have to be adopted by our farmers to increase their productivity, he said.
He also hoped that findings from this congress would be useful in an effort to develop the ruminant industry here.
The biennial event is held for the first time in Sarawak, participated by more than 600 delegates from 22 countries including USA, Egypt, Pakistan, Iran, Taiwan, Korea, Japan, Thailand, and the Phillipines.
The AAAP consists of conference, workshops, a swiflet symposium by Department of Veterinary Services Sarawak and technical visits to Bako National Park, Semenggoh Orang Utan Rehabilitation Centre, Satoyama Farm, Sarawak Biodiversity Centre and goat farm Mucow Malaysia.
Abang Johari also said Sarawak was poised to become a major player in the Edible Bird Nest (EBN) industry as it (Sarawak) is now allowed to export raw clean EBN and raw unclean EBN to China after four EBN processing plants in Sarawak were accredited by China Accreditation Authority (CNCA).
Sarawak produced about 20mt of raw unclean EBN in 2017, with an export value of RM28 million, he said.
Sarawak targets to produce 50mt of raw clean EBN for export, valued at RM500 million per year by 2030, he added.
Sarawak has an estimated 4,500 bird houses and 1,280 swiflet premises which are registered with Department of Veterinary Services Sarawak, complete with Radio Frequency ID (RFID) for traceability.
President of Malaysia Society of Animal Production (MSAP) and president of Asian-Australasian Animal Production Societies, Professor Loh Teck Chwen, who spoke earlier said the congress served as a venue for animal scientists and professionals to meet and discuss current advances in animal science and technology.
A wide variety of topics in animal sciences and aquacultures will be presented, such as feed and food security, livestock and climate change, animal biotechnology, animal breeding and genetics.
As such, this event benefits students, technologists, farmers, breeders, and those directly and indirectly involved in animal production industry, he added.
Assistant Minister of Native Land Development Datuk Roland Sagah and director of Sarawak Veterinary Services, Dr Adrian Susin Ambud were also present at the function.
Source: SARAWAK GOVERNMENT