Mushroom programme to help folks earn a living

Dr Wee (right) showing some mushroom samples to Tan at a mushroom growing room, which serves as a learning centre for the mushroom eco-entrepreneur programme.

PONTIAN: The first phase of the Tanjung Piai mushroom eco-entrepreneur programme has officially kicked off to provide those from the B40 group here an opportunity to earn more income.

The programme, mooted by the Tanjung Piai MCA, will provide each participant with 4,000 mushroom spawns as well as financial and technical assistance to set up a 6m x 6m mushroom-growing room.

Tanjung Piai MP Datuk Seri Dr Wee Jeck Seng said the programme would prioritise the B40 group, where 20 low-income households would be chosen in the programme’s first phase to give them a leg-up in eco-entrepreneurship.

“Although mushroom farming requires a dedicated space with the right conditions, participants need not worry as we work with Agrobank to provide financial assistance.

“The project will be supervised by a committee headed by Tanjung Piai MCA service centre head Tan Eng Meng.

“His team will also monitor the market price of mushrooms and ensure that there are buyers for the harvested produce.

“If all goes well, it is estimated that the participants can earn about RM1,500 to RM2,000 each month, ” said Wee after witnessing the signing of a memorandum of understanding between Tan and DXN Holdings Sdn Bhd.

The company will extend its expertise as well as provide elm and blue oyster mushrooms spawns for the programme.

DXN will also provide comprehensive technical support aside from assisting in the construction of mushroom growing rooms and ensure the safe use of mushrooms.

Wee, who is also Tanjung Piai MCA division chief, said that previously, his office had distributed mushroom spawns to single-parent families but wanted to expand the initiative more systematically to help more participants earn a sustainable income.

“I have always emphasised on people-oriented programmes to benefit my constituents, now more so with many being affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Not only are the B40 group affected, middle-income earners also face various challenges such as family members stranded in Singapore, drop in their businesses, job loss and pay cuts.

“We hope that with this eco-entrepreneur programme, we can help the participants move out from the B40 group into the middle-income bracket, ” he said, adding that youths interested to join the programme were also welcomed to register.

For enquiries or registration for the programme, call the Tanjung Piai MCA service centre at 07-699 1025.

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