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Coconut Product Diversification And Marketing In Malaysia

Coconut has been declining in importance as an export crop. However, Malaysia has seen an increase in the export of end products of coconut such as desiccated coconut, coconut milk powder and activated carbon. Total exports of coconut products in 2002 brought in almost RM 198 million (USD 52 million) while import earnings amounted to RM 266 million (USD 70 million). The major imports include coconut oil to meet the demand of the oleo-industry, coconut cream, (liquid and powder) and desiccated coconut. In recent years, there has been growing interest in using coconut and its by-products for processing into nata de coco, cushion staffing and activated carbon. Also coming into the market are products like canned coconut water, spray-dried coconut cream powder, coconut shell for activated carbon, charcoal and coconut water for food production. More research is being done to evaluate the de-husking machine, husk processing and decoated machine. The paper also highlights the role of Federal Agricultural Marketing Authority (FAMA) in ensuring efficient marketing of coconut products and encouraging contract farming with processors so that coconut farmers get fair price for their farm produce.

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