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KUALA LUMPUR: New Zealand's Whittaker's Chocolate is officially entering the Malaysian market.

The Whittaker's Chocolate Malaysia range has been certified halal by the New Zealand Federation of Islamic Association.

Whittaker's international markets head Matt Whittaker, who is also the great-grandson of the company founder, said quality and the halal status were the key points of the brand's difference.

"We control the manufacturing process from bean to bar," he said.

He said the chocolate had been popular in Malaysian duty-free shops for a number of years, which had created a demand for the chocolate to be more widely available.

"We carefully select which new market to supply to and Malaysia has been high on our list for a number of years."

Whittaker said this was a milestone achievement for the company. "Malaysia is a growth market for New Zealand-made goods."

New Zealand High Commissioner David Pine, who was present at the launch, was excited to see the iconic New Zealand chocolate company enter the Malaysian market.

"This is a great opportunity for Malaysians to get a real taste of our products," said Pine.

The product range will be available in retail outlets such as AEON Big and Tesco.

The Malaysian product range includes chocolate slabs, bars, blocks and assortments with a total of 27 products available. By Seri Nor Nadiah Koris

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