20th April 2019
Balai MPKK, Batu 10 Kebun Baharu, Selangor
Few farmers from Kuala Langat, UPM and UTHM Vice-Chancellor and several UTHM researchers.
An Official Launching Ceremony for Pineapple Hub was officiated by YB Dr. Xavier Jayakumar a / l Arulanandam, Minister of Water, Land and Natural Resources on 20 April 2019. This program is a pilot project that potentially increases the income of farmers and local through the sale of fruits and other downstream products based on that tropical fruit. According to Kuala Langat Member of Parliament, Dr. A Xavier Jayakumar, the program, which started with the cooperation of Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) and Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia (UTHM), allows residents to not only sell the fruit but they are also taught on how to produce other materials by using agricultural waste such as leaves and pineapple stems. He said that when he first came to this district last year before contesting as Member of Parliament, he saw that there were already farmers working on pineapple but the organizations involved in the company at the community level were messy.
As such, he urged the state government to jointly increase the income of the villagers through pineapple farming in the area. According to him, there is already a pineapple product that penetrates the market and now the price of pineapple outside can be said to be high. According to him, this industry can be developed if there is an overall program that can be followed by residents in the area, in collaboration with UPM and UTHM when officiating the Kuala Langat Pineapple Development Program at the New Garden. The Opening Ceremony was attended by UPM Vice-Chancellor, Prof Datin Paduka Dr. Aini Ideris and UTHM Vice-Chancellor, Prof Dr. Wahid Razzaly and several UTHM researchers. Dr. Xavier, who is also Water and Natural Resources Minister, said he realized that without fund injection, it was difficult to carry out the project, so he would work with all the agencies to start the project as a pilot project. He said it included bringing investors from outside to start a small-scale project to ensure stockpiles were available to allow downstream pineapple products to continue.
The income of local residents has the potential to be increased if the pineapple hub results are diversified beyond the sale. Dr. Xavier said the collaboration and affiliation of all government agencies, especially those involving research and development (R & D) or new research studies were needed in challenging times. He said that once the pineapple was only eaten, nowadays many products could be produced using pineapple leaves as basic materials such as paper, handicrafts and other by-products. Meanwhile, Dr. Xavier said he planned to set up a cooperative in the area to help the pineapple planters to make the industry successful. He said the pilot project needed an estimated budget of RM 50,000 and currently, he has received a small injection of funds through UPM.
The collaboration project between locals, UPM and UTHM, there were three villages namely Kampung Batu 9, Batu 10 and Jenjarom involved in planting and production of pineapple-based materials, with the introduction of machines, the results of both the public universities remove pineapple fiber from pineapple leaves. The pineapple fibers are then used to produce paper, handicrafts, animal feed stuffs and composite materials for high technology biotechnology applications for the automotive and aerospace industry including building a drone frame with the cooperation of Malaysia Unmanned Drone Activist Society (MUDAS).