JASIN, July 4 -- The urban agriculture programme recommended by the government under the National Economic Recovery Plan (PENJANA) provides an opportunity for the rukun tetangga community of Taman Pulai Indah here to expand chili fertigation and to grow hydroponic vegetables.
Rukun Tetangga Area (KRT) Taman Pulai Indah chairman, Norhisyam Zahari, 47, said an additional 200 polybags with 400 chilli kulai variety would be planted in the near future using the RM50,000 grant under PENJANA received from the Agriculture and Food Industry Ministry.
“So far the residents of KRT Taman Pulai Indah have planted 200 polybags with the 400 plants and can harvest 30 to 40 kilogrammes of chilli in six months.
“We are also planning to expand the cultivation of hydroponic vegetables such as celery and Brazilian spinach which was introduced to the KRT community here earlier this year as this method is easier, safer and requires less capital,” he said here, today.
He was speaking to reporters after the visit by Agriculture and Food Industry Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ronald Kiandee to the KRT Taman Pulai Indah urban agriculture project here.
Elaborating, Norhisyam said KRT Taman Pulai Indah has been planting chilli using the fertigation technology since 2014 and to date 30 residents were involved in the project.
Chilli planting was preferred because of the high demand and good prices it fetched in the market and the proceeds of the sale were returned to the residents of the KRT in various forms such as organising programmes within the community.
Besides, the yield was also distributed to the people in the area thereby reducing the burden of expenses in addition to exposing them to the importance of farming.
The chilli plant project was also supported by the Melaka Agriculture Department in terms of guidance and technical assistance to ensure that the plants were protected from pests or other problems, he said.
Kiandee in his speech after visiting the ‘Kebuniti’ urban farming project at the Tehel People’s Housing Programme, Bemban here, said his ministry was targetting a RM10 million allocation under PENJANA which will benefit 800 communities and 12,000 individuals in urban agriculture programmes.
Malaysia National News Agency
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