Have you ever heard that a person’s career is not necessarily related to his or her Bachelor’s degree? This is further supported by a study by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, which showed that only 27 percent of college graduates work in a field related to their majors.
And yes, this is what happened to a young man, who has a Bachelor’s degree in industrial technology management from Universiti Malaysia Pahang (UMP). He has chosen to be a farm entrepreneur as his permanent career.
According to Ewan Asyraf Majid, after graduating from UMP in 2016, he took over his family’s goat farming business because of his deep interest in the field.
“Sejali Agro Farm, located in Kampung Alit, Kabong, was established in 2014, as a result of my father’s (Majid Amit Zainuddin) interest in goat farming.
“Although I do not have a degree in farming, I have a strong foundation in business management. Apart from that, my deep interest in farming has also encouraged me to gain more knowledge (related to this field) by looking for job opportunities in farms around Pahang every semester break.
“Alhamdulillah, I get strong support from my parents and wife,” he told our reporter.
Nevertheless, according to Ewan, interest alone cannot guarantee that a person will succeed in their chosen field.
For a young farmer like him, the most important thing is to explore the market and build networks with other suppliers and breeders — which he said are quite difficult to do in his first year joining the field.
High demand for Qurban rituals
Sejali Agro Farm has a mission to be a facilitator for Muslims in Kabong and its surrounding areas in fulfilling religious demands, such as the Qurban and Aqiqah ceremonies.
“Our vision is to become the main supplier of goats and cattle in the Betong division by 2022. So far, apart from Kabong, we have penetrated the Saratok, Sarikei and Sibu markets.
“For this year’s Qurban rituals, we have received a very high demand in fact, higher compared to previous years. Alhamdulillah, more and more people have come to know and trust our business,” he said.
However, when the country implemented the movement control order (MCO) due to the Covid-19 pandemic last March, Ewan said his business was facing some challenges as demand for fresh meat are reducing as feasts were prohibited at the time. Luckily, the demand for frozen products is very encouraging and continues to increase.
Planning for the next five years
According to the 27-year-old man, for the next five years, he plans to build a mini zoo as an effort to add attractiveness to his farm and indirectly, it can also encourage more locals to visit his farm.
“Besides that, I also plan to transform Sejali Agro Farm into an agro tourism destination equipped with a mini zoo as well as farmstay facilities.
“Apart from supplying goats and cattle for the Aqiqah and Qurban ceremonies, we also supplies fresh goat milk and frozen products as well as slaughtering facilities and spaces to hold courses.
“For customers who have ordered goats or cattle from us, we provide slaughtering and cutting services where we will also send the meat to your doorstep,” he explained.
Farmstay with valuable experience
According to Ewan, his farmstay has two rooms, a living room (furnished with a television and air conditioners) as well as a kitchen equipped with a refrigerator and cooking utensils. In addition, parking is also available for the convenience of guests.
People staying at their farmstay can also visit places of interest nearby such as Santai ZK Pantai Alit (3km from Sejali), Pantai Tanjung Kembang (10km), Kabong town (13km) or enjoy the famous mi udang in Nyabor (3km).
“Sejali Agro Farm offers a new experience to people who want a peaceful and beautiful atmosphere, away from the hustle and bustle of the city.
“Here, children will have the opportunity to play with goats, cows and if they dare, they can chase geese.
“It is my hope that one day Sejali Agro Farm will continue to thrive.
“On this occasion, I would like to thank Kalaka Saribas Betong Integrated Agricultural Development Area (IADA), the Federal Agricultural Marketing Authority (Fama) and the Department of Veterinary Services (DVS) who have helped us so much,” he said.
Before concluding the conversation, Ewan advised the younger generation to get involved in whatever field they like, to not easily give up, and to always strive to improve their skills.