21/05/2024 09:17 AM

KUALA LUMPUR, May 20 (Bernama) -- The Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation, through its agency the Malaysian Bioeconomy Development Corporation, today launched the ‘Kembara Komuniti: Kecilkan Jejak, Besarkan Impak’ programme.

Deputy Minister Datuk Mohammad Yusof Apdal said this programme aims to promote the use and culture of science, technology and innovation (STI) among farmers.

It also seeks to demonstrate that STI is easily applicable in everyday life, in line with the principle of ‘Popularising Science, Humanising Technology, Mainstreaming Innovation’, in addition to guiding participants to improve crop quality using vermicompost fertiliser.

“By mastering vermicomposting techniques using African nightcrawler worms, participants can produce high-quality plants such as durian, avocado, vegetables and long beans that are more resistant to disease and insect attacks.

“Participants also have the potential to earn a net income of RM5,200 per month by selling 2,000 kg of vermicompost fertiliser,” he said in a statement here today.

Themed ‘Ada Sisa, Jadi Bisnes Bah!’, the programme will involve an initial group of 30 farmers from Kampung Melangkap Kapa and Kampung Tanginambur under the Kota Belud Farmers’ Association in Sabah who will undergo a six-month training course of recycling agricultural waste into fertiliser using vermicompost technology.

Meanwhile, Bioeconomy Corporation chief executive officer Mohd Khairul Fidzal Abdul Razak said the programme demonstrates its commitment to uniting the government, industry and academia in promoting the use of bio-based technology.

“Through vermicompost technology, farmers can recycle agricultural waste and produce bio-based fertilisers in 30 to 60 days, compared to 180 days or more with conventional composting methods.

“Vermicompost, which combines the role of earthworms and microbes, offers a faster and more efficient process than traditional methods that rely solely on microorganisms. From 2,200 kg of agricultural waste, they can obtain approximately 2,000 kg of fertiliser,” he said.

This initiative will help increase agricultural productivity, reduce production costs, create more sustainable farming practices and economic resources in Sabah, and meet the goals of bioeconomy for all.

“Farmers will also be given support and access to a wider market, joint sales arrangements, and business management and marketing training to ensure the sustainability of their agricultural activities,” he said.

The Kembara Komuniti programme is conducted in collaboration with Bioxpert Sdn Bhd (Bioxpert), a manufacturer of organic vermicompost fertiliser products as the technology provider, Universiti Malaysia Sabah to facilitate the knowledge exchange and technology transfer between students, industry experts and Bioeconomy Corporation as an industry driver.

Bioxpert is a bio-based company facilitated by Bioeconomy Corporation under the Product Development 3.0 programme.

Based in Kampung Ratau, Sabah, this company provides access to technology, markets and other resources to participants of the Komuniti Kembara: ‘Ada Sisa, Jadi Bisnes Bah!’ programme, he said.




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