Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Festival promotes best of Terengganu

IN THE LIMELIGHT: The Terengganu state government is making big strides in attracting tourists to its state, and exporting its popular keropok lekor to Britain

JOHOR BARU: THE people here recently got a taste of Terengganu when the Terengganu state government organised its Teganu Kite festival.
Held at Plaza Angsana, the festival had 40 booths selling and promoting authentic Terengganu products, mainly by small and medium enterprises in the state.
It was held in conjunction with Visit Teregganu Year 2013, and was launched by Terengganu Rural, Entrepreneur and Cooperative Development executive committee chairman Datuk Mohamed Awang Tera.
Also present was Majlis Amanah Rakyat (MARA) deputy director general (entrepreneurship) Datuk Mohd Rosdi Ismail.
Awang said the state government expects sales from the festival to reach RM400,000 this year, compared with RM300,000 recorded last year.
"We are also planning to organise a similar festival in Miri, Sarawak, in June.
"This is part of our efforts to promote Visit Terengganu Year, where we are targeting tourist arrival of four million people because of the products which we have commercialised, including nine homestay programmes and attractions in Redang Island, Perhentian Island and in Kenyir," said Awang.
He also said that one of the state's most popular snacks, keropok lekor, will soon break into the London market when 12 metric tonnes of it will be available in the city from April.
This is due to the successful efforts of local companies in promoting the snack in Malaysian restaurants in London in December last year, which led to significant orders.
Awang said the snack, which will be frozen, will be exported once the parties involved have reached an agreement.
"Initially, 4.5 metric tonnes of keropok lekor had been ordered by restaurants there and we are now in the process of ensuring that the producers here meet the required conditions before we begin exporting.
"Among the important criteria that need to be fulfilled are meeting the hazard analysis and critical control points (HACCP) standards and to receiving the halal and good manufacturing practices (GMP) certifications," said Awang.
He, however, declined to reveal the value of the export.
He added that there are also plans to export the snack to other parts of England but that would take time as there are many conditions to fulfil.
"Marketing local products overseas is one way to improve the local food production industry, besides meeting the demands of customers abroad," said Awang.

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