KUCHING, May 30 — The Malaysian Pineapple Industry Board (MPIB) has collaborated with the Sarawak government to achieve 14 per cent growth in pineapple plantations every year, in line with the target of 20,000 hectares (ha) by end-2030.

Chairman Sheikh Umar Bagharib Ali said if Sarawak can achieve the target, it can surpass Johor as the largest pineapple producer in the country.

“We will channel whatever form of assistance to achieve this initiative and for the coming 13th Malaysia Plan, we are sure to see additional allocations to assist Sarawak achieve its target of 20,000 ha pineapple plantations,” he said.

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“MPIB is actively in Sarawak since 2010 and at that time there were only smallholders without technical guidance on pineapple plantations, but as of now there are 2,288 ha or about seven per cent increase every year since 2010,” he told reporters after a courtesy visit by Sarawak Premier Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg today to the MPIB office here.

There were 11,398 ha pineapple plantations in Johor as of 2022, 2,288 ha in Sarawak and 1,361 ha in Pahang.

The pineapple export value in 2023 was RM 5.75 billion inclusive of various pineapple products with Singapore as the largest importing country at 66 per cent.

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According to Sheikh Umar, the MPIB delegation and Abang Johari met and discussed the potential of the development of pineapple plantations and the initiatives needed to boost the industry that included cooperation with local institutions, i-CATS University College for research and development (R&D) programme.

“MPIB and i-CATS have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to explore the potential and partnership, particularly in the R&D field, of the pineapple industry,” he said.

The MoU that took place before the courtesy visit by Abang Johari was witnessed by the Sarawak Deputy Minister of Food Industry, Commodities and Regional Development Datuk Dr Abdul Rahman Ismail. — Bernama