February 1, 2024 – As part of the key initiatives to strengthen Penang’s position as an investment location for AgriTech, FoodTech, and other related sectors in Penang, InvestPenang has initiated the establishment of the Penang AgriTech & FoodTech Industry Council. The main objective of this council is to serve as a platform for collaboration and engagement between government agencies and industry players on trends, opportunities, policies, and strategic directions in supporting the growth of AgriTech, FoodTech, and other related sectors in Penang.
Through this platform, the council members are able to share the best practices and industry experience. It also provides an avenue for benchmarking, learning and sharing of best practices to broaden their expertise and network. The Penang AgriTech & FoodTech Industry Council will be championed by InvestPenang and chaired by Dato’ Loo Lee Lian, CEO of InvestPenang. The members include AgriTech and FoodTech companies, such as Enza Zaden, Federal Oats Mills, Ghee Hiang, Golden Fresh, Kilang Mata Spices, Produk Makanan Enak Gembira (Ocean Planet), Tropical Consolidated, ViTrox, and the Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers (FMM) Penang Branch. The members will be meeting on a quarterly basis to ensure regular and constructive dialogue.
According to National Food Security Policy Action Plan (DSMN) 2021-2025 and National Agro-food Policy 2021-2030 (DAN 2.0), modernisation and smart agriculture are the key factors to transform the agro-food sector, focusing on new approaches based on modern technology and sustainable development, aligning with Industry Revolution 4.0 (IR4.0) and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 20301. Additionally, the Right Honourable Chow Kon Yeow, Chief Minister of Penang stated, “the food industry continues to be recognised as an important sector as promoted by the New Industrial Master Plan 2030 (NIMP 2030). While Penang is well-known for the manufacturing and electrical and electronics (E&E) sector, we are also witnessing the emergence of AgriTech and food manufacturing industries.”
Today, InvestPenang, in collaboration with the Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers (FMM), Human Resource Development Corporation (HRD Corp) and Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) co-organise an exhibit and dialogue conference, titled “Smart Agriculture & Food Manufacturing: Cultivating a Sustainable Future,” serving as a platform to showcase the latest innovations and developments in agriculture and food technologies, addressing challenges posed by extreme climate changes and exploring how modern agricultural practices contribute to global food security. The full-day conference comprised a dynamic program of presentations, case studies and panel discussions, covering topics on global trends and policies in food manufacturing and agriculture, the future of human-machine collaborations, smart farming for food security, and financial support and risk management in agriculture and food production.
Experts showcased their products and solutions, such as spanning drones in precision agriculture, indoor farming with LED technology, human-machine collaboration, and successful smart manufacturing case studies. The adoption of technology solutions driven by Internet of Things (IoT), data drive, GPS, cloud computing, robotics, automation, in-field drones will increase productivity, yields, profitability, and minimise risks and avoidance of underutilisation of resources in agriculture and food production. The conference highlighted Penang’s AgriTech and FoodTech capabilities, presented market opportunities and ecosystems for technology transfer, and commercialisation of local R&D products. It also provided insights into expected changes in the agricultural and food industry while encouraging participants to anticipate future shifts and challenges.
With Malaysia ranked 41st out of 113 countries in the Global Food Security Index 2022, the country is no exception to the growing threats of rising food insecurity. Hence, it is vital for all industry stakeholders to work together and innovate in smart agriculture and food manufacturing to contribute to sustained productivity. Through today’s event, local AgriTech and FoodTech players are presented with opportunities to contribute to Malaysia’s smart agriculture and food manufacturing industry, by having the same goal in mind – cultivating a sustainable future.
InvestPenang is the Penang State Government’s principal agency for promotion of investment. Its objectives are to develop and sustain Penang’s economy by enhancing and continuously supporting business activities in the State through foreign and local investments, including spawning viable new growth centres. To realize its objectives, InvestPenang also runs initiatives like the SMART Penang Center (providing assistance to SMEs) and Penang CAT Center (for talent attraction and retention). For more information, please visit https://investpenang.gov.my/ and follow InvestPenang’s social media channels: Facebook ; LinkedIn.