Minister Says 'Cut All Sago Trees' if Rice, Corn Prices Soar
6 October 2022 21:25 WIB
TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Agriculture Minister Syahrul Yasin Limpo said his department is ready to face the threat of a food crisis. Indonesia, he said, can rely on sago if rice and corn prices rise.
"No matter how tough the crisis, [the Agriculture Ministry] has programs. If rice and corn prices become unfriendly, we can cut all existing sago trees," he said during a National Agricultural Counseling program at the ministry's office in Jakarta, Thursday, October 6.
The minister said he still has 5 million hectares of sago plantations. The sago flour from 1 million hectares, he said, can last one to two years into the future.
"Let's just eat sago. We stick together," he remarked.
Indonesia's preparedness against food crises can be seen in last year's exports of agricultural products, which rose 38 percent. Throughout the entire New Order era, the value of exports only increased by 15 percent.
Syahrul also said he believes Indonesia is ready to face the threat of a food crisis after the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said the same. "Let's talk about this loudly. We shouldn't just be quiet about it. They think our agriculture is so-so. It's not," he said.
Vice President Ma'ruf Amin previously encouraged agriculture to be one of the pillars in anticipating the world economic crisis which is predicted to occur in 2023.
"It turns out that when we are facing a pandemic and approaching a food crisis, the safety net is agriculture," the vice president said when visiting the Guler Farm Nature in Kandawati Village, Tangerang on Wednesday.
According to the Vice President, Indonesia has the advantage of abundant natural wealth. What the country needs is a way to innovate to produce more agricultural crops.
RIANI SANUSI PUTRI | ANTARA
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