Kelantan is now Malaysia's second biggest bird's nest producer

KOTA BARU, Fri: Kelantan is emerging to be the country’s second largest
producer of the highly prized swiftlet birds’ nest, after Perak, with over 300 farms.
These farms in Kota Baru, Tumpat, Pasir Mas and Rantau Panjang, produce the
much coveted delicacy when the male swiftlets deposit salivary strands to form
the nests.
The growing industry is expected to be one of the main contributors to the
economy of the East Coast Economic Region (ECER) of which Kelantan is part
of. Other swiftlet farms within the ECER are Kampung Air Papan in Mersing;
Kuala Besut, Kuala Terengganu, Tok Soboh and Kampung Pinang in
Terengganu; as well as Rompin and Pekan in Pahang.
A statement by ECER secretariat, one of the leading producers here, Nespure
Birdsnest Sdn Bhd’s managing director Ng Ching Phock said it has become a
new industry capable of generating the local economy and creating jobs. With its
own outlet and swiftlet farm in Kota Baru, the company markets the products
directly at its outlet and sells to third parties.
“Locally harvested birds’ nests are among the world’s best in quality and whether
raw or processed, it received high demand from the international market,” he
Ng said the company employs Muslim workers to collect, clean, process and
select quality birds’ nests by using traditional methods.
The swiftlet farming industry in Malaysia has grown over the last eight years with
over 36,000 farms throughout the country by the end of 2006. Malaysia is
currently the world’s third largest producer of edible birds’ nests with 7 per cent of
gross supply value behind Indonesia (60 per cent) and Thailand (20 per cent).
In 2006, the price of a kilogramme of unprocessed white edible birds’ nests was
between RM4,500 and RM6,000 while its processed version fetched retail level
price of between RM15,000 and RM20,000 in Hong Kong and China.
The total world consumption value of the product in the same year was estimated
up to RM12 billion. Hong Kong tops the list by buying half of the world’s produce
followed by China (8 per cent), Taiwan (4 per cent) and Macau (3 per cent)