BETONG: Infrastructure and several preparatory facilities are already in place in the Betong Division to turn it into the state’s food basket.
This was disclosed by Deputy Chief Minister and Minister of Agriculture Modernisation, Native Land and Regional Development Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah after a briefing session on the Agriculture Facilitation Fund (AFF) projects for the division here yesterday
He said plans and programmes to gradually increase food production in Betong Division are being implemented to incorporate the Betong/Sarikei Food Basket and the Sadok Agropolitan to be the state’s main food production centre.
“They are the Simpang Layar collecting, processing and packaging centre (CPPC) for durian as well as another one in Spaoh, while the area farmer organisation office is being upgraded to modernise the processing of pepper, Nipah sugar (gula apong) and kelulut honey,” he added.
Uggah also said that several precision farming demonstration plots to promote the modern agriculture concept like fertigation in particular are being set up in the division as well while the Sarawak Land Custody and Rehabilitation Authority (Salcra) office here would venture into livestock breeding in its oil palm estates.
“The plan is also for it to produce around 1,000 calves each year and private investors would be invited to participate.
“We need to start production in three years from now as by then the Bebuling STOLport (airport) will be ready to airlift our produce to the markets,” he said.
After the briefing which was held at the Betong Agriculture office, Uggah went on to vist a fertigation farm owned by a local youth accompanied by Layar assemblyman Gerald Rentap, a political secretary to chief minister Dr Richard Rapu and divisional agriculture officer Petrus Kang.
Source: Borneo Post