A total of RM62 million has been allocated to farmers' organisations through the Prihatin Rakyat Economic Stimulus Package (PRIHATIN) to help its members affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.

Agriculture and Food Industry Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ronald Kiandee said that of the total, RM50 million was allocated for short-term agrofood programmes (start producing in three to six months) with each area farmers' organisation (PPK) receiving between RM100,000 to RM200,000.

"A total of 224 farmers' organisations received this special fund to implement the cash crops projects, among others, planting vegetable using fertigation method, livestock farming and aquaculture," he said.

He said this when officiating the National Farmers, Livestock Breeders and Fishermen Day as well as the handing over the economic stimulus package allocation at Menara LPP here today.

Kiandee said that another RM10 million was allocated for infrastructure facilities for food storage and distribution purposes as well as crop integration programmes to ensure the food supply value chain is streamlined more efficiently.

Another RM2 million is also allocated to increase the use of agricultural machinery including tractors and harvester, he said.

"All departments and agencies under the ministry including the Agriculture Department, Fisheries Department, Veterinary Services Department, Farmers' Organisation Board (LPP), Malaysian Fisheries Development Authority (LKIM) and Agrobank have been instructed to implement these programmes and initiatives as soon as possible to ensure that the target groups receive the benefits and the government's goals are achieved," he said.

Speaking to reporters afterwards, Kiandee expressed his confidence that the assistance channelled could stimulate and revitalise the country's agriculture and agrofood industry sectors.

"Thus far, agriculture and food supply industries are not affected but we hope the sectors can be improved through the economic stimulus package and PENJANA," he said.

He also said that farmers' organisations have benefited from the fund with many have also applied for micro-credit financing.