,Minister of Agriculture and Food Industries Ronald Kiandee says Malaysia has to reduce its imports of rice, fruits and vegetables. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, June 18, 2022.

A PARTNERSHIP between the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Industries (MAFI) and the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation could yield new technologies needed to strengthen the country’s food security and supply problems, according to Minister of Agriculture and Food Industries Ronald Kiandee.

He said the application of technology in the production of food, such as the internet of things (IoT) and artificial intelligence (AI), is important for a viable food supply for the benefit of Malaysians in future.

“Even if a plot of land is small, the production of food is still possible by using the best technologies to grow fruit and vegetables.

“We are confident of moving towards modern agriculture via the synergy of both ministries, apart from the involvement of state governments and the private sector, which could indirectly reduce dependence on food imports.

“We have to reduce our imports of rice, fruits and vegetables and should instead maximise available capacity to export our produce to other countries,” he said in Kuala Kangsar today.

Kiandee added that efforts by the ministry to ensure adequate food supplies would not be affected by modern agriculture such as hydroponics.

Perak Menteri Besar Saarani Mohamad said the state government is prepared to increase the number of agri-food centres in the state to improve the income of local residents.

“Agriculture needs new methods and technologies that do not require a large area. What is important is that the produce could be marketed by villagers. This is an important network to create food supply hubs and ensure food for security.

“We want to make Perak the largest food producer. I am confident it could be carried out after discussions with Mafi and Mosti.

“It can be a success as the Perak State Agricultural Development Corporation (SADC) has carried out farming projects,” he said. – Bernama, June 18, 2022.

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