Ministry: 97 controlled fresh market outlets to operate until April 14

A vegetable trader is seen arranging fresh produce at a wet market in Petaling Jaya March 25,2020.  — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri
A vegetable trader is seen arranging fresh produce at a wet market in Petaling Jaya March 25,2020. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

KUALA LUMPUR, April 3 — A total of 97 Controlled Fresh Market (PST) outlets will operate nationwide in stages until April 14 to ensure the continued supply and distribution of food in the country.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Food Industries in a statement said the PST was a rebranding of retail stalls like the farmers’ markets of the Federal Agricultural Marketing Authority (FAMA) and the Farmers’ Organisation Board (LPP).

It involves the sale of fresh items such as vegetables, fruits, poultry, fish, meat, groceries and basic agricultural products.

“In the first phase of the PST’s implementation, a total of 37 FAMA outlets across Malaysia have been operational since April 1, namely 17 FAMA Operations Centres, 17 Permanent Farmers’ Markets and three MyFarm Outlets,” the statement said.

In addition, it said a total of 17 Area Farmers’ Organisation Complexes managed by the LPP were also in operation, taking the current total to 54 outlets.

“For the second phase, 10 selected farmers’ markets and 16 Permanent Farmers’ Markets will begin operating. The selected farmers’ markets will operate twice a week from 8 am or 8.30 am until 11 am or 12 pm.

“Permanent Farmers’ Markets, MyFarm Outlets and FAMA Operations Centres will be open as early as 8 or 8.30 am, until noon or 4 pm daily,” the statement said, adding that another 17 Area Farmers’ Organisation Complexes will also begin operating in phase two.

It said stalls would be set up in such a way to ensure social distancing could be observed, while the entrances and exits would be regulated by the authorities to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

“Consumers are also advised to make online or cashless payments via QR Pay and E-wallets to help prevent the spread of Covid-19 through the exchanging of banknotes,” it added.

According to the statement, all FAMA marketing outlets were required to follow the set standard operating procedures such as maintaining a one-metre gap between visitors in lines, conducting temperature screening at entries, as well as using the disinfectants provided.

People are also encouraged to visit the Agrobazaar Online portal (www.agrobazaar.com.my) or do pre-orders via WhatsApp and settle the payments online before collecting their groceries at pick-up points and drive-throughs at selected outlets. — Bernama

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