Volume 6, December 2013 Volume 6, December 2013

1. Buyers’ Preferences among Pepper Farmers in Sarawak
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Author(s) : Nitty Hirrawaty Kamarulzaman, Hilda Husin, Mohd Ghazali Mohayidin dand Jatie Enchi
Keywords: Marketing channel preference, pepper, Sarawak, smallholder farmers
 

Abstract:
Pepper (piper nigrum) is a popular culinary spice besides being one of the most important spices traded internationally. Pepper contributes significantly to the agriculture sector as well as to the economy of Malysia. Sarawak is the main pepper-producing state accounting for 98% of the country’s annual production in 2011. Most of the pepper in Sarawak is being cultivated by smallholders who generally use different marketing channels to sell their produce. The Malaysian Pepper Board (MPB) is the sole government agency involved in the marketing of pepper in Sarawak; however, there are also private firms that are primarily profit- oriented buyers. From the farmers’ perspectives, selecting the best marketing channel is important to improve their pepper-marketing activities as well as to increase farm income. The aims of this study are to investigate the existing marketing channels for the pepper farmers, to determine factors that influence farmers’ preferences toward the marketing channel, and to compare their income based on their preferred marketing channel. Face-to-face interviews were conducted using structured questionnaires. Data were analysed using statistical analyses such as descriptive analysis, chi-square analysis, factor analysis, and t-test. The result revealed that farmers sold their produce using both the public channel through MPB as well as private middlemen. The farmers’ selection of marketing channels was influenced by several factors such as price, quantity, services, and distance.

 
2. Factors Influencing Consumption of Dairy Products: An Exploratory Study in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia

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Author (s): Bonaventure Boniface, Wendy Umberger and Randy Stringer
Keywords: Dairy products, consumer behaviour, milk consumption, Malaysia
 

Abstract:
Increasing demand for dairy products in Malaysia is driving government initiatives and structural change in the domestic dairy industry to increase its competitiveness and self-sufficiency. To be successful, the industry must take a value-chain approach and focus on the needs of domestic consumers. This study endeavours to investigate the drivers of increasing dairy demand by examining the factors influencing Malaysian consumers’ consumption and perceptions of various types of dairy products. A survey of 435 respondents was conducted and the data were analysed using logit models. The results indicate that demographic variables such as age and ethnicity as well as other attitudinal variables significantly influence consumers’ increasing consumption of dairy products. Managerial recommendations for the domestic dairy industry are suggested and policy implications are discussed.

 
3. Consumer Preference for Jackfruit Varieties in Malaysia
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Author(s): Norhashila Ismail and Bisant Kaur
Keywords: Tekam Yellow, Mantin, Mastura, jackfruit, consumer behaviour, taste test, Malaysia, consumer preference
 

Abstract:
Artocarpus heterophyllus Lam., or jackfruit, is a non-seasonal plant with many uses. There are new varieties of this fruit with unknown consumer acceptance to its taste, aroma and texture. A fruit party was held to conduct to study on the consumer preference or three varieties of jackfruit, i.e. Tekam Yellow, Mastura and Mantin. A total of 251 respondents participated in this study. The taste test was carried out single-blind i.e., the varieties of jackfruit tested were not known to the respondents and they were asked to give their opinions using a Likert scale. The survey found that the main characteristic that should emphasized is the pulp texture being less juicy. Nevertheless, the sweetness and the aroma were also important. Consumers generally preferred the Tekam Yellow variety because its texture was less juicy, and because it tasted sweeter than Mantin and Mastura. It was also found that colour does not significantly affect the consumer preference. Malaysian consumers generally prefer fresh fruit which is sweet rather than sour. Even though consumers generally like juicy fresh fruit, producers and marketers still need to ensure those traits do not interfere with the crunchiness of the fruit. The study concluded that agricultural researchers need to focus on new varieties of jackfruit which are less juicy, but still sweet.

 

4. Fruit and Vegetable Consumption Behaviour: A Qualitative Study of Malay Adults in Subang Jaya, Selangor

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Author(s): Norsyahidah Ismail, Muhammad Shahrim Ab Karim, Roselina Karim, Noranizam Mohd Adzahan and Nurhasmilaalisa Abd Halim
Keywords: Qualitative, fruit, vegetables, consumption behaviour, Malay
 

Abstract:
The consumption of fruits and vegetables is important in daily food intake. Thus, much previous research about the benefits of consuming fruit and vegetables has been carried out to prove the importance of fruits and vegetables intake. However, limited information was available to prove whether Malaysians consume enough fruits and vegetables. The purpose of this research is to find out the reasons amongst Malay Malaysian consumers for consuming fruits and vegetables on a daily basis. A qualitative method using an in-depth interview was employed. Ten Malay participants from Subang Jaya, Selangor were interviewed to find out their fruit and vegetable consumption behaviour. Criteria of the respondents were adults aged between 19 to 59 years old who often buy and consume fruits and vegetables. The collected data was coded and analysed manually. Thematic factors were identified at the end of the study. Consequently, results show four factors which influence the consumption of fruits and vegetables, which are sensory appeal, knowledge, availability and environment. The findings obtained from this study can provide a better undderstading to Malaysian marketers on shy Malays adults consume fruits and vegetables in Selangor, Malaysia.

 
5. Review on Quality Assurance for Food-based Products in Malaysia
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Author(s): Haron A. Rahim, Nitty Hirawaty Kamarulzaman, Ismail Abd.Latif, and Selvakkumar A/L K.N. Vaiappurri
Keywords: Food, quality, safety, food-based industry, Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), sustainable agriculture
 

Abstract:
Quality assurance measures for food products have been widely applied by the food industry players due to an increase in the demand for good quality food-based products by consumers. The establishment of quality assurance requires that the food industry players provide safe and quality products at an early stage of the supply chain. This will reduce consumers’ concerns on food safety and quality issues in the market. In order to meet the challenging requirements of quality assurance, sustainable agriculture practices such as the implementation of GAP have increasingly been applied in Malaysia. The Malaysian quality assurance schemes were established to strengthen the processes and requirements as compared to GLOBALGAP schemes. Thus, through the implementation of schemes, the market opportunity becomes open to the industry players. Besides, society will benefits from what they purchase and consume.