Saturday, July 21, 2012

Association: RFID not practical for bird’s nest export

Posted on July 22, 2012, Sunday

KUCHING: Sarawak Bird’s Nest Import and Export Association does not see the need to use radio frequency identification (RFID) as a requirement to export bird’s nests to China.
Its president Liu Thian Leong said yesterday RFID was not necessary as long as the level of nitrite in bird’s nest did not exceed 30ppm (parts per million) as agreed by the Chinese authorities.
“There is no way for the government to install the RFID in every one of the 60,000 swiftlet farm houses in the country within a short time. It may need years to complete the installation work,” he said.
“RFID is not practical or necessary. Since the Chinese authorities have agreed with the 30ppm level of nitrite in the nest and we are able to comply with the requirement, the government should instead speed up the negotiation process.”
He was disappointed with the negotiation progress as the Chinese authorities halted the imports of bird’s nests from Malaysia last July.
He claimed that many countries did not implement RFID to export bird’s nests.
On top of that, the government also required bird’s nest exporters to fulfil certain packaging standard, Liu said.
“The government has said it would provide free packaging. But our question is, would it be provided forever? This would give room for certain parties to monopolise and manipulate the industry.”
Unnecessary regulations and formalities would hurt the bird’s nest industry which had contributed to the national revenue and jobs for more than a decade, asserted Liu.
“The market price of bird’s nests has dropped drastically from RM5,000 to RM2,000 per kilo. Many bird’s nest traders and farmers are facing liquidity. The government, especially the Health Ministry and Agriculture and Agro-Based Ministry, should listen to us and take immediate action to solve the issue.”

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