ISKANDAR PUTERI (June 22): Two tonnes of fresh durian are being processed daily into pulp and “tempoyak” for the local market to overcome the durian glut happening in Johor now.
State Agriculture, Agro-based Industry and Rural Development Committee chairman, Datuk Zahari Sarip said the pulp was being processed at the Federal Agriculture Marketing Authority’s (FAMA) durian processing centre in Tangkak.
“The GMP (good manufacturing practice)-certified processing centre has added value to the product, besides solving the durian glut problem in the northern part of the state, especially Tangkak, Muar and Segamat.
“Among the facilities available are machines separating the durian pulp from the (thorny) skin, vacuum pack machines, blast freezers and cold room which can store 22 tonnes of the frozen pulp at any one time.
“The Agriculture Department also cooperates with the lead company in the processing activities for the durian-based downstream product and this also helps the small and medium enterprises to market their product,” he said at the State Legislative Assembly sitting, here, today.
Assemblyman Ng Kor Sim (PH-Jementah) had earlier asked on plans to expand the fruit processing industry, especially involving durian as more areas were being planted with the fruit tree.
Zahari said that last year, Johor produced 121,898 tonnes of durian involving 31,255 growers and 19,171 hectares, with Tangkak district being the top producer.
He said the state government was targeting an increased output of 141,862 tonnes by 2027, a rise of 13.47 per cent.
“Overall, since 2018 until now, the government has allocated RM6.34 million for the growing of durian in Johor. This year, RM2.173 million involving 233 growers with 504.9 hectares all over Johor,” he said, adding that the focus would be on growing D197 (Musang King) and D168 (IOI) varieties instead of the durian kampung. – Bernama