By Muhamad Najkhan Mazlan
Photo by Mohd Hasrul Hamdan
SERDANG, 19 March (UPM) - University Putra Malaysia (UPM) has entered into a strategic collaboration with Felda D'Saji Sdn Bhd (FDSB), a restaurant and food catering chain, to equip its students with the necessary skills for the food and catering business.
The undertaking also involved the exchange of experiences, expertise, ideas, technology and innovation from both sides, said UPM Vice Chancellor, Prof. Datuk Dr. Mohd Fauzi Ramlan, at the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the undertaking between the two parties here today.
The strategic alliance between Felda D’Saji and the Faculty of Food Science and Technology (FSTM) of UPM, he said, would provide the infrastructure to improve the quality of education and the effectiveness of students' industrial training.
The pact was signed by Prof. Datuk Dr. Mohd Fauzi and Senior Executive Director of Felda D'Saji Sdn Bhd, Ahmad Zaki Abdullah. Present at the ceremony were the Dean of FSTM Prof. Dr. Mohd Yazid Abdul Manap and Senior General Manager of FDSB, Ahmad Nordin Othman.
Under the terms of the MoU, Felda D’Saji would develop event management and academic laboratories for FSTM based on the concept of build-operate-transfer (BOT).
"The collaboration also involves partnerships to promote the UPM Banquet Hall and develop the business model of UPM food service center, L'apprenti.
"UPM through its Halal Products Institute will provide consultancy services, research and professional service to FDSB in the preparation as well as processing of FDSB products," Prof Datuk Dr Fauzi said.
He also said the cooperation between the two parties would be beneficial in branding and the internationalization of the university.
It would also support the policy of the Strategic Reform Initiative using the Private Finance Initiative approach as recommended by the National Economic Advisory Council.
"The smart implementation of the strategic alliance would open a new dimension of academic activities and the commercialization of both parties, especially in terms of new research in technology that is able to add value to the food service industry.
"Besides promoting knowledge, skills and employability of UPM graduates in the food service industry, this collaboration can also provide a source of income to the university," he said. – UPM
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