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Light at the end of tunnel for pig farmers

  • Pig farmers must first help themselves before they expect the state government to help them.

Sin Chew Daily

Having operated unlicensed for three decades, six pig farmers in Melaka have finally obtained the permits from the state government. These pig farms have conformed to the requirements set by the state veterinary department on the number of animals allowed as well as hygiene.

A a matter of fact, the state government used to issue permits to pig farmers in Paya Mengkuang in 1983, making it the only licensed pig farming area in the state. However, the permits were retracted five years later in 1988.

There are a total of 36 pig rearing farms in Paya Mengkuang. Due to poor drainage system at some of the farms, rivers and shoreline nearby have been badly contaminated over the years. The state government has repeatedly instructed local pig farmers to rectify the problem in view of the serious environmental contamination affecting local residents as well as the state's tourist industry.

For so many years, the Melaka state government and local pig farmers have disagreed over the modern centralized pig farming program, which the operators have refused to support due to lack of funding while the state government is unhappy with their passive attitude.

There were times the state government went tough with the pig farmers, including the forceful culling of 904 animals in 2007 that subsequently sparked the wrath of pig farmers nationwide. The local Chinese community accused the state government of destroying the livelihood of local residents.

The state government later drew up laws governing pig farming in the state, but unfortunately most farmers failed to comply with them.

While most farmers are indeed willing to cooperate with the state government to ensure more hygienic operations at their properties, the recalcitrance on the part of a handful of operators has defeated the government's plans.

The issuance of first permits after a lapse of 30 years shows that pig farmers need to first help themselves before they expect the state government to help them. They can't win the approval of state government without putting in some effort to improve their farming methods.

The issuance of permits to six farmers also proves that anyone can get the permit if he complies with the rules and regulations set by the authorities.

The state government has set very stringent pre-conditions for the application of pig farming permits to protect the farmers' own interests. The better the hygienic conditions, the higher the quality of the meat produced.

Pig farmers must extend full cooperation to the government in setting good industrial specifications for the state. This will help promote the development of animal farming industry as well as the overall economy of the state. With improved incomes of the people, the government will be able to upgrade the facilities and welfare for the people.

Following this breakthrough in Melaka, it is hoped that the other states in the country will also be inspired to effectively tackle their respective problems in pig farming.

The government must help the local animal rearing industry to settle the waste water drainage and pollution issues. Of course, pig farmers need the financial support of the government to transform and upgrade their operations.

 

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