Malaysia Must Develop Food Security Policy

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 6 (Bernama) — The development of the agriculture sector must be given serious Picture+15attention in developing the Food Security Policy to ensure security of food supply in the country.

Institute of Islamic Understanding Malaysia (IKIM) director general Prof Datin Dr Azizan Baharuddin said she was confident the nation was capable of boosting its food security to ensure the stability of the economy and the interest of the people based on its achievements on developing the world’s halal industry.

“Malaysia is seen as successful in its focus on the halal food hub and the time is ripe that we focus on other aspects with the need to boost the agricultural sector (planting and livestock) based on the current situation, namely, weather changes and the increase in the world population,” she said.

Dr Azizan said this to reporters after opening a seminar on Food Security ‘Contemporary Issues According To The Islamic Perspective’, organised by IKIM at Dewan Besar IKIM here, today.

She said, Malaysia was also one of the countries which was experiencing deteriorating assurance of food supply year by year.

“But, the food security situation in our country is not as critical as in other countries such as Africa. A Food Authority Organisation (FAO) study indicates that one of nine people experiences hunger every day such as in Africa and 795 million people are hungry worldwide today,” she said.

He said attention and effort must me doubled to develop the agriculture sector and agro-based industries to enable the sectors to contribute towards ensuring security of adequate food supply in the country.

“We must make a choice from now, with the government via the related ministries such as the Agriculture Ministry and the Rural and Regional Development Ministry, giving more focus on planting and livestock breeding to meet food supply requirement and tackle the issue of rising prices of goods including food,” he said.

Earlier, in her speech, Dr Azizan said government agencies, agriculture entrepreneurs and independent farmers could play a role in ensuring adequate and quality food supply in the country.

“In ensuring the nation has assurance of adequate and stable food supply, good planning and strategy are very much needed. This responsibility is not on the shoulders of one party only but requires the cooperation of numerous quarters and cannot be viewed as paltry especially in the agriculture sector,” she said.

The two-day seminar from today stressed on national food security issues and their solutions according to Islamic perspective, researches and halal innovations in overcoming the food security issues other than the effect of technology expansions on food security.