Pertanika began publication in 1978 as the Journal of Tropical Agricultural Science (JTAS). In 1992, a decision was made to streamline Pertanika into three journals to meet the need for specialised journals in areas of study aligned with the interdisciplinary strengths of the university.
Other Pertanika series include Pertanika Journal of Science & Technology (JST); and Pertanika Journal of Social Sciences & Humanities (JSSH).
The revamped Pertanika is now an international peer-reviewed journal devoted to the publication of original papers. It serves as a forum for practical approaches to improving quality in issues pertaining to tropical agriculture and its related fields, science and engineering research, and also deals in research or theories in social and behavioral sciences as well as the humanities, particularly in the Asia Pacific region.