Malaysia is planning extensive production expansion of hybrid pineapple variety MD2 to meet rising global demand, reports Bernama.
The Malaysian Pineapple Board (MPIB) told the publication that national acreage under MD2 cultivation would increase from 375ha in 2013 to 5,000ha by 2020. Meanwhile production will rise by 70 per cent to 63,500 tonnes by 2016.
MPIB chairman Datuk Samsolbari Jamali said the Malaysian government had identified MD2 as a particularly profitable commercial crop, due to its high value and rising global popularity.
Samsolbari said global demand for Malaysian pineapples is projected to double to 700,000 tonnes by 2020.
“The country's pineapple industry has tremendous potential for further development and expansion following the strong demand from foreign markets,” he told Burnama.
Currently around 6 per cent of Malaysia’s total pineapple production is exported to fresh markets, Samsolbari said.
Singapore and Middle East were the key markets for fresh pineapples, where in 2013 Singapore accounted for 75 per cent and United Arab Emirates (UAE) 16 per cent, he said.
He said the country's target for all pineapple plantations by 2020 was 22,589ha.