KUALA LUMPUR: The Plantation and Commodities Ministry (KPK) aims to expand the country’s total cocoa farming area to 10,000 hectares in five years from 5,985 hectares currently, said Deputy Minister Datuk Chan Foong Hin.

He said the focus will be on cultivating premium cocoa bean varieties, which are capable of penetrating a niche market, by growing the crop on parcels of land that have been identified.

“With the guaranteed prospects of the domestic cocoa market, it is hoped that the commodity is given the necessary allocation to increase its land area to 10,000 hectares as targeted, starting with RM3 million for 2025,” he said during the question-and-answer session in Parliament today.

He was replying to a question from Riduan Rubin (Independent-Tenom) who wanted to know about KPK’s efforts to empower the cocoa industry.

Chan also disclosed that KPK is in the midst of branding and promoting premium local cocoa products as single-origin cocoa with a unique flavour, to enable cocoa producers to promote the distinctive taste and attract local and international chocolate makers.

KPK and the Malaysian Cocoa Board are also promoting the introduction of new technologies and adoption of existing technologies as good agricultural practices to boost productivity and facilitate plantation management operations through the application of the latest technologies, including mechanisation and Internet of things.

“This initiative can enhance the youth’s interest to participate in the upstream sector, as well as strengthening marketing support for operators and smallholders to ensure sustainable cocoa cultivation,” he added.




Sumber : The Sun