KUANTAN, Oct 29 (Bernama) -- The high demand for ‘sambal hitam’, a popular Pahang side dish that has been gaining traction lately has forced Juriah Abdullah Hashim, 55, to ramp up production.
The manager of the De Payrys Enterprise said that she was short-handed to fulfil the orders when sales increased from around 600 bottles to 1,000 bottles a month after actively promoting the product through social media such as TikTok and Facebook.
Juriah, who has been running the business in Pulau Tawar, Jerantut for the past eight years, said the sambal hitam is sold at RM15 per bottle for 130 grammes, while the 100 gramme-bottle is sold at RM10.
She said she intends to buy a machine to increase and speed up production as she currently only had three workers to help her.
She also expressed hope that the Special Business Financing Scheme for Women (DanaNITA) which is among the government's initiatives to increase women's business capacity announced in Budget 2023, could be realised.
"I hope that the financing scheme can be implemented so that I can buy a machine to meet the high demand for my sambal hitam. “The DanaNITA scheme is a good initiative by the government to help small and medium industries," she told Bernama.
She was met at her booth today at the three-day Pahang Aspirasi Keluarga Malaysia (AKM) tour which began yesterday at the Sultan Ahmad Shah International Convention Centre here.
On Oct 7, Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz when tabling Budget 2023 in the Dewan Rakyat announced a total of RM235 million in funds made available specifically for women under the Semarak-Nita BSN Scheme, Tekunita TEKUN, DanaNita MARA and Biz Lady Bank Rakyat to encourage more women to increase business capacity and improve marketing strategies.
However, the Budget will be tabled again since Parliament was dissolved before it could be debated and passed.
Meanwhile, AFAA Group Industries Sdn Bhd managing director 'Ainul Fathiyyah Abdul Fatta, 32, who runs a fresh and frozen food business is also among the female entrepreneurs looking forward to the initiative.
"This assistance is much needed because sometimes we have an opportunity to grow our business, for example in terms of renewing our packaging, but we can't proceed due to financial constraints," she said.
'Ainul Fathiyyah added that the initiative could later be considered a ‘fast track’ for female entrepreneurs to expand their business, among them, by purchasing technology such as machines to process the products.