By Dr. Lim Ban Keong, D.V.M (UPM)，GM of Rhone Ma Holdings Bhd
The ruminant industry in Malaysia only started taking off over the last ten years with many participants being small farmers. To help them out, we plan to share our combined expertise and technological knowhows for dairy farming and milk production with other farmers and other interested parties,” – said Dr. Lim Ban Keong
There’s nothing better than a splash of milk in your morning coffee for the important nutrients for our body. However, sometimes consuming milk and milk products might result in tummy problems. If that happens, it’s time to try A2 milk.
Tummy problems from milk may not necessarily be due to lactose intolerance or trouble digesting lactose sugar in milk. Recent research suggests that a less-known protein, A1, may be one of the culprits. A1 produces a protein fragment known as Beta-casomorphin-7 (BCM-7) during digestion which triggers tummy discomfort and symptoms similar to those with lactose intolerance.
There are 2 kinds of proteins in milk: A1 and A2. While most cows’ milk contains both, A2A2 cows produce only A2 protein, which results in A2 milk.
Rhone Ma Holdings Berhad, a homegrown end-to-end animal health solutions provider, introduces the A2 milk to the local market through its acquisition of 49% interests each in three livestock companies in February 2020. The Group has teamed up with One Lazuli Sdn. Bhd., Nor Lazuli Nutrition Sdn. Bhd. and Nor Livestock Farm Sdn. Bhd. in order to expand into the dairy farming business.
As a first step, the Group and its partners injected RM3 million capital in Nor Livestock Farm Sdn. Bhd. who operates a 6-acre dairy farm in Batang Kali, Selangor which currently house more than 160 A2A2 Holstein cattle. The Group expects to further expand the herd to 500 heads as they are expecting around 90 more female cows to be born in a few months’ time. In addition, they are also planning to import another batch of 100 impregnated cows in 2021. The farm’s milk production currently averages 12,000 litres/month and soon the farm is expected to produce approximately 65,000 litres/month.
The Group’s shift into the ruminant sector is part and parcel of its responsibilities as a key industry player to further develop the local ruminant industry. Rhone Ma, a proponent of the Total Solutions Programme (TSP) which allows customers the flexibility to customise the animal health services and animal health products to form their desired animal health solution, has pledged to work together with local dairy farmers to support them and establish more dairy farms in the country in line with the government’s heed to stimulate the industry.
“The ruminant industry in Malaysia only started taking off over the last ten years with many participants being small farmers. To help them out, we plan to share our combined expertise and technological knowhows for dairy farming and milk production with other farmers and other interested parties,” said Dr. Lim Ban Keong, Managing Director of Rhone Ma Holdings Berhad.
“This will also include advocating the use of Milk Boosta the premium cattle feed that was specially formulated to induce energy for maximum milk production for cattle in a tropical climate. The combination of Milk Boosta and Alfalfa Hay and some kind of supplements also helps to reduce heat stress,” added Qasem Alhasan, Managing Director of Nor Livestock Farm Sdn. Bhd.
With the establishment of more farms, the Group will not only be able to encourage their peers to thrive in the industry but also address the issue of fresh milk insufficiency in Malaysia head on. On top of that, as consumers become more health conscious and discerning in their food consumption, the Group and its partners envisage a big future for fresh A2 milk in the local market.