Malaysian halal products have potential in non-Muslim markets as well, says Mat Sabu

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KOTA KINABALU: Halal food products from Malaysia have the potential to penetrate not only Muslim markets but also those in other countries, says Datuk Seri Mohamad Sabu.

The Agriculture and Food Security Minister said Malaysia’s halal industry, particularly processed food items, had already been exported to some 1.8 billion Muslims in more than 150 countries.

“But I believe this market remains vast,” he said when launching the Sabah International Food Expo 2024 at the Sabah International Convention Centre (SICC) here on Saturday (March 9).

“And with efforts being doubled, it is not impossible that one day, local Malaysian halal products will not only be concentrated in Muslim-majority countries but will also be the products of choice in every corner of the world.

“Most definitely, it is the ministry’s intention to see local products penetrate the international market,” added Mohamad, better known as Mat Sabu.

As such, he said, the government, through his and other ministries, will continue to support local industry players in developing their products and services on the global stage.

He noted this would be done through various government incentives whether in the form of advisory assistance, training, grants and tax incentives.

On digitalisation in the agriculture industry, Mohamad said technology was a key factor in transforming how food can be produced, processed, sold and consumed.

In this context, he added, there have been many instances where entrepreneurs had obtained extraordinary success, particularly among the youth who were more synonymous with the social media influencer scene.

“They have managed to double the source of income by increasing the sale of local products through social media.

“I believe Sabahan youth also have the ability to come up with food products from their own state that can potentially be marketed and sold nationwide through digital applications, be it online or offline,” said Mohamad.

Speaking to reporters later, he said the supply of beef and chicken meat was sufficient ahead of Ramadan and the Hari Raya festive period.

He said his ministry would be working alongside the Federal Agricultural Marketing Authority (Fama) and the Domestic Trade and Cost of Living Ministry to ensure essential food items were available in the market.

“If the chicken supply is insufficient, we can import from countries like China and Thailand, among others,” he said.



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