The government is expected to initiate talks with Japanese food and beverage (F&B) firms that are involved in the 2020 Summer Olympics and Paralympics to utilise and supply Malaysian palm oil and palm oil-based products.
Primary Industries Minister Teresa Kok (picture) said the ministry has identified several companies in Japan that have great potential in acquiring Malaysian Sustainable Palm Oil (MSPO)-certified palm oil.
“There are some companies that have expressed their intention to secure some great contracts for the imports of MSPO-certified palm oil from Japan.
“As the Olympics and Paralympics are going to be held next year, the game organisers already agreed to accept our certified palm oil and palm oil-based products, and this will only increase the vegetable oil’s exports to Japan.
“My ministry will reach out to these Japanese companies to push for the exports,” she told reporters at the unveiling of the Alif brand’s new label by Sime Darby Oils Sdn Bhd in Kuala Lumpur.
The 2020 Summer Olympics, to be held in Tokyo between July 24 and Aug 9, holds a huge potential for F&B businesses on the whole as it is expected to require more than 140 million meals for the Olympic Athlete Village, with the halal food market estimated at US$300 million (RM1.26 billion).
Last year, Malaysia exported about 450,000 tonnes of palm oil to Japan while Malaysian palm oil contributed 60% of the island nation’s palm oil imports each year.
In July, Kok said the MSPO certification scheme has been included as a guideline for the 2020 Summer Olympics and Paralympic Games Sustainable Sourcing Code for palm oil.
MSPO was among the three certifications approved by the Tokyo Organising Committee last December, in addition to the Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil and Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil.