哈希牛牛源码:5 ways to ensure Malaysia\u2019s food security
LAST year, Malaysia imported a staggering RM63 billion worth of food.
The recent shortage of chicken and high food prices have created awareness of food security in Malaysia.
Politicians from across the racial, religious and ideological divides have held forth on this issue and rightly so.
At the recent United Nations General Assembly, all heads of government are turning their attention from Covid-19 to the disruption of supply chains for food and other necessities that the pandemic caused.
Of a sudden, food security has become a matter of grave concern.
So, is Malaysia facing a serious food security threat?
The short answer is, not now. Food security is measured mainly by four criteria: availability, affordability, safety and quality, and natural resources and resilience.
Malaysia is ranked 39th in the global food security index and second in Southeast Asia. Not a bad position, given that our agriculture sector, once the mainstay of the economy, has been neglected for many years.
However, 2020 and beyond has altered perspectives, compelling the weighing of issues about food, its cultivation and supply into matters of grave concern.
Four major developments have caused serious concern on food security globally as well as to Malaysia.,
First and foremost, the Covid-19 lockdowns caused global supply chain disruptions. It has changed the supply chain forever, including the trade in food.
Second, the trade war and decoupling of China and the United States have spilled over to food trade as well. The trade war will intensify in the foreseeable future.
The third factor complicating matters is the Russia-Ukraine war that began on February 24. Prior to the start of hostilities, Ukraine was responsible for 30% of global wheat supply and Russia was the largest fertiliser export country in the world.
The fourth and, likely, the most important development is climate change. The incidence of extreme heatwaves, followed by droughts, and unprecedented floods that occurred in countries like Pakistan, combined to reduce global food supply.
The scale and intensity of these disasters jarred climate change deniers out of their complacency and forced them to acknowledge that climate change presented a challenge that policy-makers had to factor into their calculations of the future.
In Malaysia, food security overnight became a matter both government and opposition politicians had to reckon with.
How do we as a country prepare for the looming food security crisis?
I would like to propose five action items to make Malaysia more resilient in our agriculture and food industry.
Agriculture land reform
Land is key to all agricultural advancement. If more land is allocated to farmers, more food can be produced.
Peninsular Malaysia currently has eight million hectares of agriculture land.
Around six million hectares or 75% are allocated to oil palm plantations. Another one million hectares or 12.5% are for rubber plantations.,