Malaysia Has To Step Up Grain Corn Production

Malaysia Has To Step Up Grain Corn Production

SEBERANG JAYA, Penang, Malaysia, Feb 26 (NNN-BERNAMA) – Malaysia has to step up the production of corn, as the nation spends RM 3.09 billion (US 0.759 billion) a year, to import grain corn, Deputy Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister, Sim Tze Zin, said today.

He said, the amount spent annually to import grain corn, which served as the main source of animal feed, had been increasing by 10 percent every year.

“Dependency on imported corn has reached almost 100 percent, creating risk and instability to the national livestock industry. The demand for grain corn alone is increasing globally and is expected to double by the year 2050.

“Our challenge to increase corn production to meet future demand lies on research and development (R&D), governance and policy implementation,” he said, when opening the ASEAN Regional Corn Conference, organised by the Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute (MARDI), here.

He said, the increased prices of chickens and eggs lately, were closely related to the cost of buying grain corn for animal feed.

Sim said, the government targeted to produce 1.44 million metric tonnes of grain corn, from 80,000 hectares, by the year 2032, despite challenges of the global situation that are increasingly competitive, such as free trade, climate change and sustainable development goals.

He said, according to a MARDI report, the quality of the grain corn planted in Seberang Perai (Penang state), was better, compared to the imported ones.

“Studies on its nutrient composition and the growth performance of local broilers has shown no significant difference, compared to the imported ones. Thus, I believe the input received from scientists, experts, international panellists and speakers from this conference, will be utilised for the advancement of the grain corn industry at the national and regional level,” he said.

The three-day conference, starting today, has drawn a total of 250 participants from scientists, experts, entrepreneurs and industry players from Malaysia, Mexico, Indonesia, Thailand, India, and the Philippines.– NNN-BERNAMA


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