PUTRAJAYA, June 17 — The Agriculture and Agro-based Ministry expects about 1,000 metric tonnes of Malaysia’s frozen whole durian to enter the Chinese market every month.
Its Minister, Datuk Salahuddin Ayub told reporters this at the launch of the event to commemorate the inaugural export of Malaysia’s frozen whole durian to China here today.
He said the export protocol was signed on Aug 20 last year in Beijing, China, adding that exports of the king of fruits is expected to contribute close to RM500 million to the nation’s total export value annually.
Five companies were given the green light to export the fruit to China, namely Exofruits Industry Sdn Bhd, JL Food Industries Sdn Bhd, PHG Ever Fresh Food (M) Sdn Bhd, Top Fruits Sdn Bhd and KAMI Food Services Sdn Bhd.
“We hope that more companies will be able to get the permission to export the fruit soon,” he said.
Also present was China’s Ambassador to Malaysia, Bai Tian.
Salahuddin said the ministry was confident that the total production of the fruit would be sufficient for the local, international and China’s large market demand.
He said total production of durian rose to 341,000 metric tonnes last year from 211,000 metric tonnes in 2017, and was expected to keep increasing in the future, especially the premium variants such as the Musang King and Black Thorn.
“Negotiations with China in the past few years have resulted in the opening of more commercial durian farms, thus giving a boost to production,” he said.
Salahuddin added that Malaysia’s efforts to penetrate the Chinese market for durian began in 2007, and following negotiations between the two countries, Malaysia began exporting frozen durian in the form of pulps and paste in May 2011.
Last year, the country’s total durian export to China stood at RM9.44 million or 235.62 metric tonnes. — Bernama