KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia needs to innovate its research and development activities further to cope with the increasing complexity of the halal industry, said Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi (pix).
He said there was a need to continue to innovate R&D initiatives as producers seek alternatives for use of halal products to replace typically non-halal ingredients.
“This sector is important as it is one of the major components, critical for the sustainability of the halal industry. The Government will continue its efforts to promote investment and trade in halal-related areas,” he said in his speech at the launch of the Halal Ingredients Asia 2015 (HLIA 2015), here, yesterday.
HLIA 2015, aimed at providing a platform for industry players to further accelerate the development of the halal industry, was hosted by Halal Industry Development Corporation (HDC) and the International Trade and Industry Ministry.
All halal products, said Dr Ahmad Zahid, would have to go through rigorous R&D processes.
“The halal ingredient sector has been identified as one of the most critical bottlenecks within the halal value chain,” he said.
He noted that the country's strength was largely in the area of R&D in the palm oil industry where agencies such as the Malaysia Palm Oil Board and other research institutions would play their roles.
Halal-compliant companies were also facing serious issues, which include limited R&D on halal ingredients and limited raw supplies for the production of ingredients, said Dr Ahmad Zahid.
Last year, the export of halal products recorded from certified companies stood at RM37.7bil, of which halal ingredients was valued at RM12.16bil, he said.