KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 3 2019 (Bernama) -- Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad today proposed to local farmers to optimise their agricultural land by practising mixed farming to avoid being dependent on just one crop.
He said mixed farming had been seen capable of preventing the farmers from being trapped and affected by the drop in the price of certain commodities, such as oil palm and rubber.
“If we have land, we must venture into mixed farming.
“Let’s not hold on to just one crop...because if the price drops, we’ll be in trouble. Even among cash crops, we have cucumber, chilli, tomato and if we rotate them according to the market, we will not lose our income just because of a drop in the price of one of the crops.”
Dr Mahathir said this in a video uploaded onto his Facebook page after his visit to Jalan Kebun Permanent Food Production Park in Klang; Agro-Fertigation Farm in Kajang; and the orchid nursery at the Bukit Changgang Agrotechnology Park in Banting, today.
“I was surprised and impressed with the very organised vegetable farms. This is how we can depend on agriculture to support our lives.
“The farm need not be wide, but if we only plant it with oil palm and the price drops, we’ll be crying...but if we plant one part of the land with oil palm and the other part with cash crop, then we will not be trapped or affected by the drop in the price oil palm or rubber,” he said.
Dr Mahathir said farmers, especially the young ones, must be willing to accept the new trend and must also be highly disciplined to make it a success.
“If we do not have discipline, we cannot progress...we have to work hard, we have to reduce dependence on workers, especially foreign workers. What we can do ourselves, we do ourselves.
“We have to change our way, we want to succeed as modern farmers, gentleman farmers...that’s our aspiration,” he added.