Brunei’s “agripreneurs” boost agricultural output by 13%

Brunei agripreneurs boost agricultural output by 13%

Brunei’s gross agriculture output has increased by $56.65 million to $436.30 million, or around 13 per cent, in 2018 on the back of growing amounts of livestock, driven largely by the poultry sector, and more than 300 hectares of land had been developed by new farmers, so-called “agripreneurs,” under a special pilot project introduced in 2016.

The farming pilot project under the Department of Agriculture and Agrifood (DAA) is one of nine initiatives developed by the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism to boost agricultural output to meet local needs, as well as for export.

Since the scheme was introduced in 2016, 46 people, including 16 youths, have been given farmland, where heavily subsidised rental rates start as low as $5 per hectare and year for sub-sectors such as livestock farming and go up to $25 per hectare and year for vegetable and fruit farming.

Most of the farmers under the pilot project are using lots below two hectares. In total, there are over 7,000 hectares available for development for emerging farmers, both locals and foreigners.

The initiatives are aimed at increasing Brunei’s food security and eventually making Brunei self-sufficient in food production. Currently, Brunei imports the vast majority of its food from overseas and is only self-sufficient chicken meat and eggs. Imports still make up 53 per cent of the vegetables and 63 per cent fruits on the market. Local supply of cattle and sheep only makes up 29 per cent of the local demand.

However, latest statistics by the DAA show that Brunei has made progress in self-sufficiency in several local varieties. For instance, Brunei has over 96 per cent self-sufficiency in young coconuts, calamansi, jackfruit and soursop, and also in eight types of vegetables, including varieties of green beans, mustards, cucumbers, spinach and bitter melon.

DAA officials said that they have earmarked several other local vegetables and fruits that the country is already halfway and has the potential to be fully self-sufficient in. These include chilies, eggplant, melons, bananas and papayas.

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Brunei’s gross agriculture output has increased by $56.65 million to $436.30 million, or around 13 per cent, in 2018 on the back of growing amounts of livestock, driven largely by the poultry sector, and more than 300 hectares of land had been developed by new farmers, so-called “agripreneurs,” under a special pilot project introduced in 2016. The farming pilot project under the Department of Agriculture and Agrifood (DAA) is one of nine initiatives developed by the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism to boost agricultural output to meet local needs, as well as for export. Since the scheme was introduced...

Brunei agripreneurs boost agricultural output by 13%

Brunei’s gross agriculture output has increased by $56.65 million to $436.30 million, or around 13 per cent, in 2018 on the back of growing amounts of livestock, driven largely by the poultry sector, and more than 300 hectares of land had been developed by new farmers, so-called “agripreneurs,” under a special pilot project introduced in 2016.

The farming pilot project under the Department of Agriculture and Agrifood (DAA) is one of nine initiatives developed by the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism to boost agricultural output to meet local needs, as well as for export.

Since the scheme was introduced in 2016, 46 people, including 16 youths, have been given farmland, where heavily subsidised rental rates start as low as $5 per hectare and year for sub-sectors such as livestock farming and go up to $25 per hectare and year for vegetable and fruit farming.

Most of the farmers under the pilot project are using lots below two hectares. In total, there are over 7,000 hectares available for development for emerging farmers, both locals and foreigners.

The initiatives are aimed at increasing Brunei’s food security and eventually making Brunei self-sufficient in food production. Currently, Brunei imports the vast majority of its food from overseas and is only self-sufficient chicken meat and eggs. Imports still make up 53 per cent of the vegetables and 63 per cent fruits on the market. Local supply of cattle and sheep only makes up 29 per cent of the local demand.

However, latest statistics by the DAA show that Brunei has made progress in self-sufficiency in several local varieties. For instance, Brunei has over 96 per cent self-sufficiency in young coconuts, calamansi, jackfruit and soursop, and also in eight types of vegetables, including varieties of green beans, mustards, cucumbers, spinach and bitter melon.

DAA officials said that they have earmarked several other local vegetables and fruits that the country is already halfway and has the potential to be fully self-sufficient in. These include chilies, eggplant, melons, bananas and papayas.

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