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Integrated Approach In The Processing Of Coconut Products / By Products And Market Prospects In Malaysia

1. The total area under coconut cultivation showed a decline over the years. However, estimated total exports of coconut products in 2007 had increased from USD144 million in 2006 to USD148.5 million, while imports had reduced from USD 132.6 million to USD120.4 million in 2006. Currently, there are 20 major companies involved in processing coconut-based products for domestic and overseas markets.

2. As for industrial processing, there have been an increasing number of coconut-based industries especially for the oleo-chemical industries to produce methyl ester and diethanol amide, coconut cream, desiccated coconut, nata, coir fibre, coir bristles, cushion stuffing and activated carbon. Acceptable Standard for production practices are generally advocated by coconut companies towards meeting quality standards for coconut products. Malaysian exporters, follow the standards for specific coconut products available in the country and as required by the buyers such as ISO 9001:2000, HALAL, Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) certifications. Some products are also audited and are compliance with the requirements of HACCP standards prescribed by the National Food Hygiene Standards and Regulations, and the FAO/WHO Codex Alimentarius Commission CAC/RCP-1 Amd (1999), MS 1480:1999 & MS 1514:2001, Food Act 1983 and MS 1351. Some products are certified by BM TRADA Certification, a leading multi- sector certification body accredited by United Kingdom Accreditation Service.

3. The major constrained faced by the coconut processing sector is the low supply of raw materials, both for edible and non edible materials. To address these challenges, various initiatives were implemented such as increased production of seedlings to cater for the replanting programmes, usage of fertilizer, improvement in drainage and irrigation and introducing new and high yielding varieties. 

4. It is recommended that APCC member countries increase the domestic production to meet the raw materials needed as stipulated under the PNG Declaration. APCC should also provide a strategic road-map and the implementation approach to achieve this. The numerous recommendations and project proposals that resulted from the Roundtable meeting held in Kuala Lumpur in 2007 should be prioritized to be effectively implemented or considered by the relevant countries within the APCC umbrella for further action.

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