KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 9 — Malaysia’s exports of fresh fruits including durian, pineapple and jackfruit, are expected to increase to more than RM700 million this year compared with close to RM600 million last year, said the Federal Agricultural Marketing Authority (FAMA).

Its Chairman, Tan Sri Badruddin Amiruldin said the export value of durian alone was projected to grow to at least RM150 million from RM74.39 million in 2016.

He said the export target was dependent on crop production which largely was influenced by the weather.

“We expect more durian orchards to produce high-quality fruits, (following which) we will export to more foreign countries such as China, Hong Kong, Australia, and others,” he said to reporters after officiating the flag off ceremony to send frozen durian to Qinzhou, Guangxi, China in Gombak near here today.

The export of the Musang King variety sent to China was in conjunction with the inaugural Nanning Durian Festival 2017.

Badruddin said the export value of durian to China was projected to increase to RM23.4 million this year compared with RM18.02 million last year.

Besides China, he said FAMA also exported durians to Singapore, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Australia, and others.

FAMA is also targeting new export markets such as Canada and South Korea in the subsequent durian seasons.

“If we want to open new markets, we have to always ensure sufficient supply to meet the demand from the new market,” he added.

Badruddin said the durian export industry promised lucrative returns with a short-term investment of up to five years.

He said durian-based end products such as ice cream and coffee had become the trend among the young generation at present. — Bernama