Deputy Minister: Sarawak’s factories processing sufficient chickens to meet demand

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Dr Abdul Rahman observes as workers process chickens at the abattoir.

KUCHING (Jan 16): Factories in Sarawak are processing enough chickens to supply the whole state even though demand rises near festive seasons, said Datuk Dr Abdul Rahman Junaidi.

The Deputy Minister for Utilities and Communications said the state’s factories have successfully adjusted output according to the level of demand.

“As the (consumption) need increases nearing festive seasons like the coming Chinese New Year celebration, the factories will also need to increase their production,” he told reporters after visiting K&L Farming Food Industries at Mile 9 with the Sarawak Islamic Council (MIS) halal committee today.

Dr Abdul Rahman, who is in charge of Islamic Affairs, said there are 16 abattoirs in Sarawak that have Malaysian Halal Certification, one of which is K&L Farming.

“This factory is one of those producing chickens for consumption in Sarawak, and the purpose of the visit is to monitor its compliance with the halal certification standards. The company has been operating for nearly 30 years here and is one of the pioneers in the chicken slaughterhouse business.

“The company is able to process nearly 15,000 chickens in one day using the chickens from their own farms located at Jalan Kuching-Serian, Jalan Landeh, and Matang. Once slaughtered and processed, the products are sent to sales premises in Kuching, Sibu, and Miri,” he said.

Dr Abdul Rahman said the company is in the process of applying for halal certification for a few of its chains, even though this particular factory is already certified.

“They have 22 chains within and outside Kuching that are in the process of applying for halal certification.

“We are taking the effort to ensure that chicken products from all slaughterhouses in Sarawak are done properly in accordance with halal procedures so that it will benefit the consumers, especially the Muslim community,” he said.

Dr Abdul Rahman said the company is also building a new factory adjacent to the present facility.

“We have been informed by the management that they are building a new factory, which will use technology from Denmark. It will start operation at the end of next year.

“If we compare the existing facility to a new and modern factory, there is bound to be differences in terms of space and compliance to halal procedures. For example, the blood from the slaughter flows onto the floor when it should not be exposed. This is among the things we have given feedback to the management for improvement while they wait for their new building,” he said.

Meanwhile, Dr Abdul Rahman said there are over 80 sales outlets selling chicken throughout Sarawak and only four have Halal Malaysia certification.

These are Choice Ria Astana, Choice Ria Ajibah Abol, Choice Ria Semariang, and CCK Matang.

“For the others, we recommend that they assist to ensure the process of getting them halal-certified can be done soonest as they have already applied but have not complied with a few guidelines,” he said.

Following the visit to K&L Farming, the group also went to Choice Ria Supermarket in Samariang for an inspection.

Choice Supermarket, which has been operating since 2000, has eight branches throughout the state.

It was the first sales outlet in Sarawak to obtain Halal Malaysia certification for chicken and meat sales.