KUALA TERENGGANU: The Ministry of Internal Trade and Consumer Affairs (KPDNHEP), through the Malaysian Food Bank Secretariat, has so far successfully installed 12 autoclave machines in hotels and restaurants in 10 states.
KPDNHEP Secretary General Datuk Azman Mohd Yusof said the machines will increase the shelf life of surplus food from 18 to 24 months using aseptic techniques.
He said that since the initiative was launched in May last year, the machines, which can prevent food waste, especially in the hospitality sector, have produced 3,000 retort food wrappers which have benefited groups targeted and B40 students to reduce the cost of living on campus.
“A single retort machine is estimated at RM30,000-40,000, so the allowance we use comes from the rest of all expenses that cannot be spent. We use this money to purchase retort machines so that we can deliver to hotels, catering premises, etc. for packaging purposes.
“This initiative is now under the responsibility of the ministry, but we will have to think about the best model to provide these machines. So, we hope that there will be players or those in the private sector who are ready to help encourage the use of these retort machines,” he said.
He told reporters after presiding over the presentation ceremony of the plaque and certificate of appreciation from the strategic partners of the Retort Packaging Technology initiative as well as the Malaysian Food Bank’s Retort food donation program here on Saturday, September 17.
Azman said leftover food packed using retort machines would also help flood victims in the upcoming monsoon season, as it lasts longer and is easier to prepare.
“We will work with relevant parties such as Nadma (National Disaster Management Agency, JKM (Social Welfare Department) and so on to ensure that food via retort processing can be delivered to flood victims, but it would also require contributions from other parties,” he says. – Bernama