Operations ceased due to imported meat shortages

I would like to respond to the letter by A Consumer on ‘New normal, new ideas’ in the Opinion page on August 15 by saying that the proposals made were logical and forward-thinking.

I believe the temporary solutions suggested would solve food importers’ malaise.

I agree with the writer that authorities could adopt digital technology in witnessing the whole food production in Brunei Halal accredited abattoirs overseas.

If such a move were implemented, a lot of food importers could start bringing in processed food products while businesses depending on imported meat for production could resume operations again.

I’m in the canned food processing industry. We use beef imported from India for our production. Last month, our stock of raw meat dipped so low that we expected to be completely out by the middle of August. And it did.

Now we have no choice but to cease operations altogether.

We simply don’t have the budget to consider locally produced beef due to the stark price difference. Moreover, the amount that we require for production can’t be sufficiently supplied.

Our neighbour, who produced meat balls and burger patties, has met with the same fate.

They too are faced with shortages of raw food supplies.

Now we are left in the doldrums while awaiting the new stock to come in. Sadly, we have no idea when that would be.

Timely actions are important, especially with the survival of so many food importers and manufacturers hanging in the balance.

I urge the authorities to take the plight of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) seriously and provide a viable temporary solution that will save us from the impending demise.

Canned Food Producer