There’s always someone in the group that’s a picky eater. It could be your friend, your partner, or even you. For Tengku Asaad and Rahayu Permatasari, it was their son.
It was a struggle to get him to eat anything. So like anyone who’s a little lost, they turned to the internet for help. “We were scouring the internet for a remedy to this, and that’s where we found bone broth,” the couple shared.
Their holy grail discovery turned out to be more than just a cure for their ailments.
Noticing the gap in the market for bone broths in Malaysia, Asaad and Ayu launched The Daily Broth, and the rest is history.
An unexpected calling
The duo began as a small F&B venture and had “almost no investment cost”. As parents with full-time careers, they relied on word-of-mouth referrals to get the engines running. But eventually, their orders increased so much that they knew a change was in store.
“The bigger it grew, the more it was clear to us that we had to take this venture seriously,” Asaad told Vulcan Post.
So after half a year of operating The Daily Broth as a side business, Asaad decided to quit his job at a bank. His interest in food meant that it was a small price to pay as he could properly nurture the couple’s passion project.
“Demand was growing after six months and not slowing down. We knew the market was still much bigger than we had tapped and required our full focus to pursue it,” they said.
Supporting her husband on the sidelines, Ayu chose to stay working in a multinational O&G company. She currently acts as the brand’s unofficial social media manager and curates all of The Daily Broth’s content to give it a premium branding.
They also engage with third-party photographers and videographers to get those picturesque shots from time to time.
Honesty is the best policy
As new business owners, Asaad and Ayu opted to be transparent about their product. A quick scroll through The Daily Broth’s Instagram account and you’ll get the gist of how they operate. “We tell our customers which pots we are using, [which] ingredients, and [the general] process,” the couple shared.
Besides that, their mindfulness towards hygiene is quite impressive. “We send our broth to the food lab to ensure it is free from any bacteria contamination and also no chemical leaching.” For a small business, this level of dedication is not as common as you’d think.
The pair is also dedicated to providing good service. When an intermittent power outage caused their broths to taste different, they immediately contacted everyone the bad batch was delivered to and replaced about 300+ jars.
Together, these efforts earned the brand’s seal of approval from the public. Asaad and Ayu noted that more than 50% of their customers frequently return for more bone broth. In fact, they’re now profitable too, though the couple declined to share any figures.
Most of The Daily Broth’s profits come from online orders. However, the brand has also increased their coverage by collaborating with resellers and partners. This has helped to expand the brand beyond Kuala Lumpur to Penang, Johor, and even Kuching.
Word of their broths also reached the ears of our neighbouring country. Across the pond, the couple’s family members (namely their sisters) are managing the franchise in Singapore.
“Before we decided to open up in Singapore, we had so many customers from Singapore purchasing our broth and bringing it back home,” the couple recounted.
Taking criticism in stride
From being run by the couple in their apartment, The Daily Broth is currently being handled by six employees that help with internal operations and three full-time riders for deliveries.
Operations were also moved to a central kitchen below their residence about a year and a half ago. This year, Asaad and Ayu shared that they are looking into moving to a bigger space to further expand their production capacity.
Having grown so much since the brand’s first launch in 2020, it should come as no surprise that the brand has seen its fair share of challenges, such as negative customer sentiments.
“People often complain about the price and our waiting time,” they shared. Their organic chicken bone broth is priced at RM22 for a jar (240ml). This is similar to other homemade bone broths in the market, such as ByTqahNasir who sells a more Malay-centric variation at RM15 for a pouch (250ml).
In regards to the waiting time, they explained that it typically takes 24 hours to cook the chicken bone broth, and 48 hours for the beef bone broth. “So for beef for example, if we make the broth on Monday we can only deliver on Thursday.”
“The process is tedious, from sterilising the jars, prepping the meat and vegetables, all the way till packaging.” For a homemade product, the price and wait sound reasonable, but some people may be used to the cheaper prices and instantly-available nature of commercial bone broths.
While brands like Heinz may sell chicken bone broth at RM14 for a carton (1L), it does contain other additives that may not be as nutritious as a homemade product.
Another challenge that they’ve faced is maintaining the quality of the broth with each batch. Consistency is key and the large volumes increase the room for error. But with practice, they’re learning from their mistakes and getting better with each “unpleasant” experience.
Brewing up a new life
The journey has not been smooth sailing, yet Asaad and Ayu persevere. When asked if they’ve ever felt like giving up on the business, they firmly said, “No, that’s never crossed our minds.”
“We do get burnt out from time to time, but the feedback that we receive about how our broth has helped our customers’ kids recover from sickness, or cancer patients recovering from chemo, gives us that boost of motivation.”
The Daily Broth is in the process of obtaining licences like the halal certification and HACCP. As of now, there are no plans to expand the business geographically further as they want to focus on maximising their market share in Malaysia.
Once that’s secured, then they’ll branch outwards and reach more countries in Southeast Asia, Europe, and the United States. “We already have a few offers in hand for franchising in Europe, but we can’t say yes at the moment as we are not ready yet,” they disclosed.
- Learn more about The Daily Broth here.
- Read other articles we’ve written about Malaysian startups here.
Featured Image Credit: The Daily Broth