Kim­chi to be new niche prod­uct in Kun­dasang

The Borneo Post (Sabah) - - HOME - By Ray­mond B. Tom­bung

KUN­DASANG: A few days ago Kun­dasang saw the rise of a new mini-in­dus­try to pro­duce the famed Korean del­i­cacy - Kim­chi, no less!

A course in the pro­cess­ing of the kim­chi, as well as sauces and krepek, was held at Na­balu Lodge here for three days, from Oc­to­ber 11 to 13, or­ga­nized at the ini­tia­tive of the De­part­ment of In­dus­trial Devel­op­ment and Re­search (DIDR).

At the course’s launch­ing, the Per­ma­nent Sec­re­tary of the Min­istry of In­dus­trial Devel­op­ment’s (MID), Datuk Haji Hashim Pai­jan re­marked that “Kun­dasang is now all set for an ex­cit­ing and vi­brant devel­op­ment in the tem­per­ate veg­etable in­dus­try. This is be­cause of this min­istry’s ini­tia­tive to in­tro­duce new food pro­duc­tion which will lever­age on the abun­dant veg­etable re­sources of Kun­dasang such as cab­bages, toma­toes, car­rots, etc.”

Stephen Sampil, the chief co­or­di­na­tor of the course who is also the Deputy Di­rec­tor of DIDR an­nounced that said the course was well at­tended with a 100-per cent prac­ti­cal par­tic­i­pa­tion rate out of 30 at­ten­dants.

“The ini­tial feed­backs from the en­thu­si­as­tic par­tic­i­pants were very en­cour­ag­ing in­deed. Many were say­ing that they had been anx­iously wait­ing for quite some­time for this kind of course so that they could uti­lize the ex­cess veg­eta­bles that they are not able to sell to be turned into some­thing valu­able,” Sampil said.

“They were very glad that they no longer have to throw away their ex­cess cab­bages, toma­toes and other veg­eta­bles be­cause they can now process them into kim­chi, sauces and krepek.

“The par­tic­i­pants were also very grate­ful and ex­pressed their ap­pre­ci­a­tion to the State Gov­ern­ment for giv­ing them the op­por­tu­nity to learn new mon­ey­mak­ing skills to im­prove their eco­nomic and busi­ness life.”

Sampil also said that DIDR’s move to or­ga­nize the course was timely and ap­pro­pri­ate as the ini­tia­tive would def­i­nitely as­sist to fur­ther de­velop ru­ral in­dus­tries, cre­ate new niche prod­ucts, de­velop new en­trepreneurs and gen­er­ate in­come to im­prove the stan­dard and qual­ity of life of the peo­ple in line with the Satu Daerah Satu In­dus­try (SDSI) pro­gram or One District One In­dus­try (ODOI) pro­gram.

“This will also con­trib­ute to the over­all devel­op­ment of SME’s in Sabah. In the case of Kun­dasang, this area is well known for its thriv­ing tem­per­ate veg­eta­bles in­dus­try not only through­out Sabah but also in the whole of Malaysia,” he added.

“How­ever, al­most all of the pro­duces here are sold fresh with much com­pe­ti­tion, mak­ing the veg­eta­bles vul­ner­a­ble to volatile price fluc­tu­a­tions, which is also a fac­tor in over-sup­ply.

“In many cases un­sold veg­eta­bles are left to rot, thus wast­ing the valu­able food re­source. Thank­fully, with the DIDR’s course, I am con­fi­dent that the would-be en­trepreneurs course par­tic­i­pants will be able to make new and higher value-added prod­ucts, thus earn­ing a higher re­turn and in­come.”

He is con­fi­dent that in time to come th­ese new prod­ucts of kim­chi, sauces and krepek will be­come highly pop­u­lar and fast-sell­ing niche prod­ucts of Kun­dasang, which vis­i­tors to this pop­u­lar highland re­gion of Sabah, will come to buy on top of their usual haul of fresh raw veg­eta­bles.

Stephen (seated mid­dle) with the course par­tic­i­pants.

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