Nigeria’s dairy industry gets shot in arm from consortium

Nigeria spends U.S.$1.5 billion annually to import milk. Various initiatives have been implemented to look at ways of cutting the spend by government.

The Centre for Nigerian Dutch Dairy Development is Nigeria’s first national expertise centre for dairy development and it says it is “committed to unlocking and developing dairy expertise for all stakeholders in the Nigerian dairy sector”.

The U.S. has also donated pregnant Jersey cows to the government to assist in growing the industry. Meanwhile, Vice President Yemi Osanbajo has welcomed Value4Dairy Consortium – FrieslandCampina WAMCO, URUS, Barenbrug and Agrifirm, for their commitment to increase self-sufficiency in Nigeria’s dairy sector.

Osinbajo made this known at the virtual launch of the consortium recently. He was represented by the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Niyi Adebayo saying that, “with FrieslandCampina WAMCO as the processor to deliver the end chain; this partnership will drive increased domestic consumption of processed milk and milk products and the expected industry growth.”

The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Alhaji Mohammed Sabo Nanono also commended the consortium saying: “I am confident that the consortium will drive inclusive engagement and positively influence the development of national livestock initiatives at various levels of government.”

According to a statement, the partnership was built on the companies’ global achievements and experiences with which they will accelerate sustainable dairy development to deliver high quality nutrition for everyone involved in the dairy chain from farmer to consumer.

The consortium brings to the dairy sector specialised milk collection and processing (FrieslandCampina WAMCO), better breeding (URUS), proper roughage production (Barenbrug) and fitting animal feed (Agrifirm).

They will help to integrate the dairy sector and formulate homegrown methods to solve challenges, which previously hindered growth.

According to these experts however, the dairy development gains made by FrieslandCampina WAMCO in Nigeria still need public sector collaboration to scale up and expand.

Speaking at the launch, the Managing Director, FrieslandCampina WAMCO Nigeria Plc, Ben Langat explained: “Over the past months, we have discussed with these partners on ways to accelerate the progress of the Nigerian dairy sector.

“Our goal is to invest in local business models to enable the dairy sector become self-sufficient and profitable throughout the entire chain.

“Only a sector with a healthy return on investment can be self-sufficient and will survive in the long term.

“We are proud to state that these three professional companies with proven track records believe in developing the Nigerian dairy sector with FrieslandCampina WAMCO.

“They are top of the global expertise in the dairy sector with proven performance and excellent reputation as well as maintain world-leading market positions” Langat said.

The consortium is already working on steps that will increase local milk production and processing; which will include combined infrastructures for the distribution of milk and semen.

They will train farmers to succeed more with better cow semen, grass seeds and feed supplements.

Source: This Day, Ng

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