KOTA TINGGI: The well-known agro-tourism destination of Desaru Fruit Farm here suffered losses of about RM600,000 after 90 per cent of its 87-acre orchard was inundated by floodwaters.

Desaru Fruit Farm director Alice Tong Ah Chin said water guava, banana, bidara (jujube) and pomelo were among the fruits that were badly damaged when the orchard was flooded with more than two metres of water on Tuesday.

“Damage is done not only to the trees and fruits, but also to our other infrastructure, including the agricultural gallery which was also swamped.

“We have more than 100 species of plants and fruit trees. Although we are often hit by flooding, this is one of the worst,” she said at the Desaru Fruit Farm here today.

She said the bridge at the entrance to Desaru Fruit Farm was also submerged in waist-high waters causing the side embankment to collapse.

Tong said due to the flooding and damage caused, she was also forced to cancel the bookings of customers who wanted to engage in agro-fun activities on the farm.

She said the farm also paid its own way to hire a bulldozer to deepen Sungai Cemaran, near the Desaru Fruit Farm, to allow floodwater to recede.

She hopes that the relevant authorities would consider rendering assistance as the Desaru Fruit Farm, which has been one of the famous agro-tourism destinations since 2003, receives about 500,000 visitors every year.

“Our tourists hail not only from Singapore but also from China, Turkey, Brunei, India and South Korea.

“So, I hope if any (government) department is forthcoming to help, please include enlarging Sungai Cemaran because this is a tourist area,” she said.

As of 2 pm today, the number of flood victims in seven districts in Johor state has decreased to 5,427. - Bernama

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