The Malaysian Health Ministry has sought the help of
the customs department to ban the import of animal feed containing beta-agonist,
a growth agent used by farmers to feed to their pigs.
Health Minister Datuk Dr Chua Soi Lek said the customs department had in
principle agreed to classify the import of products containing beta-agonist
under the Customs (Prohibition of Import) Order 1988 and under the Customs Act
"When the substance is banned by customs, breeders who want to
import it must get permission from the pharmacies which will not be given
anyway," the Minister said.
Chua said pig breeders would be signing
"akujanji" (letter of understanding) before the Chinese New Year to declare that
their farms would be free from beta-agonist, an enhancement agent that can cause
cancer, increase heartbeat rate and even cause death in advance heart
He said the letter of understanding was one of the conditions
enforced by the Veterinary Services Department to compel breeders not to use the
banned substance and they had agreed to comply with the requirement within this
"All 656 pig breeders in the country have agreed to sign the
"akujanji" which will enable monitoring and enforcement to be done effectively,"
Beta-agonist was brought into the country through illegal means
as the country's Poison Act does not allow the import of such agent in whatever