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UPM student applies knowledge, becomes modern livestock entrepreneur

By: Nur Syamila Kamarul Arefin
Photo By: Mohammad Izrul Abdul Jabar

SERDANG, April 20 - Today's youths are less involved in livestock farming because it is not famous and is considered a difficult business. Among other factors, the business is not the choice of many because people want a quick profit, while livestock farming needs a lot of patience.

However, for a student of Bachelor of Science in Food Service Management, Faculty of Food Science and Technology (FSTM), Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), animal agriculture has a very bright future for him, but many young people do not want to get involved in this field.

Muhammad Amirul Haris Asral ventured into beef cattle farming as early as 12 years old and was educated by his own father, a cattle herder.

The eldest child of the two siblings, since the age of 12, was taught by his father how to cut beef at a very young age even though other children were busy playing with friends.

He said because of his deep interest in agriculture, he chose UPM as a good learning platform to develop the business in the sale of fresh meat, which he now works with his younger brother.

He and his brother have more than 300 cows, buffaloes and goats in two livestock farms located in Jasin, Melaka and Bangi, Selangor, with a farm area of ????32 acres.

“We trade meat every day in Dato Abu Bakar Baginda, Bangi, because the demand for fresh meat is very high. Previously, my father only focused on selling cattle. However, I try to sell this meat myself every day.

“Every day, I manage to sell one to three cows. Many people are looking for fresh meat. If it's late, by noon, my meat will be sold out.

“Again, for this Raya, many people have already ordered beef early. Every day each customer will buy more than 3kg of meat,” he said.

He added that although the course he is taking now has nothing to do with his business, the food management course helped a lot in the sale of meat.

“The food management course is closely related to the raw material, which is the meat I sell. In the courses taken, the food processing course taught me how to do the packaging of the meat commercially and how to preserve the meat to make it last.

As a former diploma student in agriculture at UPM, he also used the model of preparing cattle feed using pasture grass and corn grown by himself.

“Besides that, I also have my own business producing sugarcane and bananas, earning a monthly income of RM8,000 to RM10,000. However, during this month of fasting and Raya, the income is more than the usual days.

He said meat is a major food source that can survive in the current market despite natural disasters because everyone has to eat it.

“It is not easy to be easy. Everything that is done requires hard work to achieve something in life. Young age is not a barrier to achieving it.

“In Malaysia, not many people want to do business in the field of livestock, if you are given the opportunity, take it, and Insyallah, it will bring a very lucrative outcome if you are patient.” -UPM