The success of the Jemaluang Dairy Valley initiative will raise the nation’s milk
self-sufficiency while creating jobs and entrepreneurial opportunities
MERSING, JOHOR, 18 SEPTEMBER 2021: The Johor State Government and the East Coast Economic Region Development Council (ECERDC) today signed a Collaboration Agreement (CA) to develop the Jemaluang Dairy Valley (JDV) project as part of the overall strategy in turning the East Coast Economic Region (ECER) into the “Dairy Valley” of Malaysia.
The JDV project will be built on 275 hectares of land located in Mersing, Johor. When fully operational in 2023, it is expected to produce 5.1 million litres of fresh milk annually, boosting national production by 11%. This will further reduce the country’s reliance on imported milk products, which is estimated to be worth a total of RM3.9 billion in 2019. JDV is also projected to create 100 new job openings and 30 agropreneurial opportunities for the local community in Mersing
JDV is a key agribusiness project in the agrofood@ECER, an integrated initiative for agricultural and food products which includes the Dairy Valley project. JDV takes an integrated approach that includes upstream, midstream, and downstream activities looking into all aspects of dairy cattle production, consisting of animal breeding, livestock management, milk processing, and related industries such as animal feed and nutrition. The JDV project will be modelled after the highly successful Muadzam Shah Cattle Research and Innovation Centre (MSCRIC) in Pahang, another project by ECERDC.
MSCRIC is a public-private partnership project that has catalysed the growth of the dairy cattle industry in the ECER. With the appointment of Farm Fresh Sdn. Bhd. as the Anchor Company of MSCRIC, milk production of the project has surpassed the initial target, with a production of six million litres of fresh milk in 2020. It has also directly benefited the local population, including the Orang Asli community, by generating 275 new job opportunities and 2,206 entrepreneurial prospects, such as home dealers and satellite farmers.
“The Johor State Government has planned to expand its agricultural sector and intends to become a major food exporter as well as a “food bank” to other exporting countries. The JDV project by ECERDC will support the state’s objective to become the regional food hub, in line with the Johor Food Security Agenda, as well as the Johor Food Bank initiative, one of the seven endeavours under “7 Ikhtiar Makmur Johor” (7 Endeavours for a Prosperous Johor)” to accelerate the state’s economic recovery,” said YAB Dato’ Haji Hasni bin Mohammad, the Menteri Besar of Johor at the signing ceremony.
The Collaboration Agreement was signed by En. Baidzawi Che Mat on behalf of ECERDC, while the Johor State Government was represented by Johor State Secretary, YB Dato’ Haji Azmi bin Rohani, and the State Secretary Johor Incorporated (SSI) was represented by Johor Deputy State Secretary (Development), YB Dato’ Dr. Badrul Hisham Bin Kassim. The ceremony was witnessed by YAB Dato’ Haji Hasni bin Mohammad, the Menteri Besar of Johor.
“The JDV is a component of the larger Dairy Valley initiative to create an efficient and sustainable dairy industry across the ECER, namely in Jemaluang, Mersing, Setiu, Terengganu, West Pahang and Lojing, Kelantan. Combined, the ECER Dairy Valley is anticipated to produce 40% of the local fresh milk. This will help to lessen the country’s dependence on imported milk while providing local communities with jobs and entrepreneurial opportunities as satellite farmers and dairy industry entrepreneurs,” said En. Baidzawi Che Mat, Chief Executive Officer of ECERDC at the signing ceremony.
Through its agrofood@ECER initiative, ECERDC’s vision is to transform the ECER into a major food production hub for the nation, which will address the nation’s food security concerns, by reducing food imports especially dairy products, as well as creating jobs and entrepreneurial opportunities for the rakyat.