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Board sees big output potential [03-07-2013]  
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The Malaysian Cocoa Board is optimistic cocoa production in the country will reach approximately 60,000 tonnes by 2020.

A board member, Datuk Hilmi Yusoff, said Malaysia produced about 3,400 tonnes of cocoa which was not sufficient to meet domestic demand.

"There are cocoa-based product manufacturers who are sourcing dry cocoa beans from Indonesia to meet their demand," he told reporters after opening a course on cocoa cultivation and production here yesterday.

Hilmi said the industry had vast potential to develop further and farmers could derive high returns from the cultivation of the commodity.

"For this year, the government has allocated RM12.6 million to develop 1,580 hectares of land under cocoa plantation nationwide," he added.

Hilmi said dry cocoa beans currently fetched about RM5,900 per tonne and the International Cocoa Organisation had forecast that prices would continue to spiral as supply dwindled.


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