TUMPAT (May 21): Livestock smuggling activities along the Malaysia-Thailand border in Kelantan believed to have caused the spread of foot and mouth disease (FMD) involving cattle in the country.
Veterinary Services Department director-general Datuk Quaza Nizamuddin Hassan Nizam said this was because the cattle brought in illegally did not go through quarantine and vaccination process.
“We found a total of 10 cases of FMD involving cattle nationwide as of April this year and it is a relatively large number compared to only 35 cases recorded last year.
“Most of these cases have been found in Pahang, Johor as well as Melaka and most of the cattle were from Kelantan that were brought in illegally from Thailand,” he said.
He was speaking to reporters after officiating the Tumpat livestock breeders programme here today, that also attended by special officer to Minister of Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Wan Johari Wan Omar and Kelantan Veterinary Services Department director Suratan Kamarudin.
During the programme, participants were given exposure on the functions of government departments and agencies in assisting the livestock industry, and it also served as a platform for knowledge sharing among successful breeders.
Quaza said various revenue generating opportunities could be achieved through livestock industry, including planting crops to be used as animal feed, as well as breeding programme through artificial insemination.
Thus far, he said Malaysia only managed to produce about 23% of supply of local meat, while the rest or 77% were imported from other countries.
“Livestock industry is also quite static over the years. We hope more people will take the opportunity to venture into livestock as it has huge market in the country,” he said.
He said the veterinary department was always ready to help those interested in livestock breeding by providing various programmes and courses. — Bernama