By Karen Bong
KANOWIT, Oct 22: The popular jungle fern midin (Stenochlaena palustris) relished by Sarawakians as a side dish during meals has now become a hot favourite among Singaporeans.
This revelation which would certainly come as good news to the state’s midin gatherers and planters rolled off the lips of none other than Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg.
The chief minister disclosed this during the launch of the new RM4 million Agriculture Office for Nanga Machan here today, adding that Sarawakians should be encouraged to cultivate the wild fern for export to overseas markets.
He said last week he was informed that midin has been exported to the city-state via Scoot Airlines.
He pointed out that midin can be sold in Singapore through the Sarawak Trade and Tourism Office acting as the business bastion.
Abang Johari said: “Other than midin, Sarawak is also exporting the silver patin and tilapia fish from Batang Ai as well as pork to Singapore.
“I encourage the farming community in Sarawak and Kanowit especially, to take advantage of the current market to produce more agricultural products of quality for the international market.
“Furthermore, I believe during the dabai (local olive) and durian seasons, Kanowit will be packed with people from throughout the state and can also attract people from Brunei,” he added.
Touching on the new Nanga Machan Agriculture Office, he said it will advise and guide farmers in improving farm productivity as food security is an important issue both globally and at home due to the growing population.
Abang Johari also pointed out that the state government has allocated over RM700 million for the development of the agriculture sector in the state, which was the biggest ever for the sector under the record budget of over RM10 billion for 2019.
“In Nanga Machan, agriculture development will be given priority. Our future is bright as Sarawak is in a good position, including financially.
“As long as Sarawakians govern Sarawak, other development and assistance will come eventually in due time through the right approach.”
He also approved two requests for Nanga Machan today namely the extension of road construction connecting to Ulu Machan under the Upper Rajang Development Agency (Urda) and a RM3 million waterfront to be implemented by Kanowit District Council.
Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas, Minister of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs and Kapit MP Datuk Seri Alexander Nanta Linggi, Deputy Minister of Health and Kanowit MP Datuk Aaron Ago Dagang and Machan assemblyman Allan Siden Gramong were among those present. — DayakDaily