December 11, 2003
Malaysia Urged Oil Palm Smallholders To Undertake Integrated Cattle Farming
Malaysia's Former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad recently urged oil palm smallholders to undertake integrated cattle farming. The advantages include increased income and reduced meat import bill in the country.
However not many of them had responded even though the government had suggested this to them, he said after visiting a beef-cattle farm managed by Kris Agirtech Sdn Bhd at Padang Hijau on the Kluang-Mersing road here.
"Local farmers are more inclined to go for oil palm, cocoa and rubber cultivation to earn an income but with cattle farming they can increase their earnings," he said.
Every year the government imported about 200,000 head of beef-cattle at a cost of RM2 billion, Dr Mahathir who is also the former Finance Minister said.
"Hence with the involvement of locals in the livestock rearing the outflow of money to other countries can be reduced," he said.
Dr Mahathir said the Argentine cattle was of special quality and weighed around 450kg and was very suitable for rearing in Malaysia.
At present only Kris Agirtech had a farm rearing beef-cattle particularly that of the Brangus species.
This year in October, Kris Agirtech took over the management of the beef-cattle farm from the Veterinary Services Department.
The 400-hectare farm has 1,400 head of beef-cattle of the Argentine species.