The leadership of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria has called for increased investments to drive the growth of the Nigerian dairy industry.
Speaking during the commemoration of the world milk Day in Abuja, Baba – Othman Ngelzarma, national president of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN), decried the lack of processors and off-takers in major parts of country where Milk is produced.
“We need new investments in the multitrillion industry that had been neglected by the government.
” We currently lack processors and off-takers in many areas of production. That is why we see our women hawking their produce”, he said.
In his remarks, Muhammadu Abubakar, president of Commercial Dairy Ranchers Association of Nigeria (CODARAN), noted that one of the successes achieved in the quest to develop the dairy sector, is the recent approval of the National Dairy Policy by the Federal Executive Council.
For him, “the association is committed to developing the dairy industry to meet the daily nutritional needs of Nigerians by fully harnessing local milk resources to create jobs, national wealth, and sufficiency.
“The vision of the Association is to actively promote the production, processing, marketing and consumption of quality and nutritious dairy products made from local resources.
“We have been consistent in using the conference as a medium to bring stakeholders in the Nigerian dairy ecosystem together to reflect and consider transformational strategies for pursuing and attaining sufficiency in milk and dairy products.
“The stakeholders’ resolutions at these conferences have served as input to impactful policy advocacy undertakings, and dairy development activities that the Association has embarked on.”
The representative of the central bank of Nigeria, Philip Yila Yusuf, director, development finance department said, “we recognize the potential of this well-orchestrated collaboration to drive our common goal of breed improvement and sustainable increase in milk production to reduce the milk supply gap of 1.1 million MT (from 600,000mts).
“We at the CBN are committed to the development of the livestock sub-sector as evidenced by our interventions in facilitating funding for numerous projects under our Commercial Agriculture Credit Scheme (CACS), Agribusiness Small and Medium Enterprises Investment Scheme (AGSMElS), Real Sector Support Facility-Differentiated Cash Reserve Requirement (RSSF-DCRR), to the tune of over N40 billion.
“The World Milk Day conference is indeed an avenue to strengthen and foster alliances and expand our opportunities to the global field. This will no doubt offer new opportunities towards more viable and sustainable financing strategies for the dairy businesses in Nigeria, towards self-sufficiency.”
He reiterated the significance of deepening collaborations with local and international development partners as a catalyst towards achieving the common objective of National security and self-sufficiency.
Ernest Umakhihe, the permanent secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture and rural development stated that the ministry has embarked on capacity building and empowerment programmes for dairy farmers on hygienic milk production and processing.
Other programs of the ministry according to him includes: construction and equipping of milk collection centres in areas with comparative advantage for dairy, feed-milling facilities for production of ruminant feeds, pasture collection centres, animal handling centres among others.
“We will continue to provide an enabling environment for increased milk production, processing, distribution and consumption to improve the nutritional status of Nigerians, create jobs along the dairy value chain and reduce national expenditure on the importation of milk and milk products.
“The Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development through the Bank of Agriculture will be providing financial empowerment to livestock farmers to enhance their productivity and resilience,” he said.