The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Thu, 10/30/2008 10:46 AM
The government is set to develop horticultural zones to support agrobusiness and serve the domestic market, an academic said in Denpasar, Bali, on Thursday.
"Efforts have been undertaken within the last five years by way of rehabilitating existing plots and developing new ones," Dean of Agricultural Technology of Udayana University in Bali Bambang Admadi said, as quoted by Kompas.com.
The efforts, he said, were spearheaded by the Agriculture Ministry's Horticulture Directorate.
Bambang said there were no less than 1.7 hectares of horticultural land already being developed in 66 regions accross Indonesia.
"The results have so far been positive. We have had a steady 10 percent increase of fruit harvest per year," he said, adding that such growth had allowed the country to produce 14,313,101 tonnes of fruit per year.
Vegetables followed closely with an average growth rate of 5.4 percent or 9,011,417 tonnes annually.
Despite positive trends, Bambang argued that the level of the country's production was still not sufficient when compared to the exports of neighboring countries.
"The value of Indonesia's current horticultural export is merely 0.6 percent with a total output of 345,642 tonnes," he said. "This pales in comparison to other countries in Asia and Australia."