30 July 2016
SHAH ALAM: Malaysians are consuming way less fruits than the amount recommended by the World Health Organisation (WHO).
With this in mind, the Federal Agricultural Marketing Authority (FAMA) is banking on several initiatives to encourage fruit consumption to boost the figure.
FAMA director-general Datuk Ahmad Ishak said Malaysians are eating only 63 kilogrammes of fruits per capita a year compared to the WHO's suggested 400 kilogrammes.
"That is a small amount. It means that on an average, a person takes only 5 kilogrammes a month. We need to encourage people to eat more fruits as we have found that there is a downward trend among the younger generation. We have embarked on campaigns, targeting school children and the younger generation.
"We have strategies to get more people to eat fruits like creating awareness on the deliciousness and freshness of local fruits. We have also gone to schools and put piles of fruits and introduced the different kinds and let students taste them. Accessibility of various fruits will also be boosted through carnivals.
"We also found that the younger generation also do not like to eat too much of our King of Fruits, the durian. So we want to encourage the consumption in ways the younger ones prefer, such as durian crepe, pancake, mochi or crispy rolls. If you offer fresh durian and a durian crispy rolls to a youngster, for sure they will choose crispy rolls," said Ahmad after launching the Selangor Fiesta Durian and Agro-Based Industry and Herb Carnival at SACC Mall today.
Meanwhile, Ahmad said the demand for Malaysian frozen durian pulp for China has been increasing since 2011.
He said that despite the stringent export conditions imposed, RM31 million worth of frozen durian pulps were flown into China last year.