PUTRAJAYA: The government has allowed two local sugar producing companies - MSM Malaysia Holdings Bhd and Central Sugars Refinery Sdn Bhd (CSR) - to produce clear refined white sugar effective Thursday (May 25).
Domestic Trade and Cost of Living Minister Datuk Seri Salahuddin Ayub said the approval would give consumers a choice of sugar, besides the existing coarse and fine refined white sugar which is described as 'people's sugar'.
He stressed that the sale of clear refined white sugar cannot replace the existing supply of white sugar, and the company will face action if it does not produce enough of the existing supply of white sugar.
The government has also instructed MSM and CSR to continue producing refined white sugar at the current quantity of 42,000 tonnes per month, he said in a press conference after attending the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Cost of Living's (KPDN) Excellent Service Award Ceremony here today.
"The people do not need to be upset and panic, the people's sugar is still in the market," he said and added that the production of clear refined white sugar would not affect the existing supply of sugar.
Warnings have also been given to wholesalers and retailers who impose conditional purchases or do not sell existing white sugar to customers, he said.
In the meantime, Salahuddin said Ops Manis will be carried out again for a month starting today to ensure that the production of clear filtered white sugar does not affect the price and supply of white sugar available in the market.
The current price of refined white sugar controlled by the government is RM2.85 per kilogramme (coarse) and RM2.95 per kilogramme (refined), set under the Supply Control Act 1961.
Asked if the clear refined white sugar belongs to the premium sugar category, Salahuddin said it is up to the company to label it, and most importantly it is not sold at a high price.
"The price of that sugar (clear refined white sugar) is not controlled by the government, instead it is determined by the market," he said. - Bernama