The Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) has urged the government and private sector to invest more in the Nigerian dairy industry.
During the commemoration of World Milk Day in Abuja, Baba-Othman Ngelzarma, the national president of MACBAN, expressed concerns about the lack of processors and off-takers in key milk-producing regions of the country.
Ngelzarma emphasized the need for new investments in the multitrillion industry, which has been neglected by the government. He highlighted the current situation where women are forced to hawk their milk due to the lack of processing facilities and buyers in many areas.
Muhammadu Abubakar, the president of the Commercial Dairy Ranchers Association of Nigeria (CODARAN), acknowledged the recent approval of the National Dairy Policy by the Federal Executive Council as a step towards developing the dairy sector.
Abubakar affirmed CODARAN’s commitment to harnessing local milk resources to meet the nutritional needs of Nigerians, create jobs, and ensure national self-sufficiency.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) recognized the potential of collaboration in achieving the goal of breed improvement and sustainable milk production. Philip Yila Yusuf, the director of the CBN’s development finance department, mentioned the CBN’s interventions through funding programs like the Commercial Agriculture Credit Scheme and Agribusiness Small and Medium Enterprises Investment Scheme, totaling over N40 billion.
Yusuf stressed the importance of deepening collaborations with local and international partners to strengthen the dairy industry and enhance national security and self-sufficiency.
He highlighted the World Milk Day conference as a platform for fostering alliances and exploring financing strategies for Nigerian dairy businesses.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development’s permanent secretary, Ernest Umakhihe, outlined the ministry’s efforts to support dairy farmers.
“These initiatives include capacity building and empowerment programs on hygienic milk production and processing, construction of milk collection centers, feed-milling facilities, and animal handling centers” Ernest revealed.
Umakhihe affirmed the ministry’s commitment to creating an enabling environment for increased milk production, job creation, and reduced dependence on milk imports.
The ministry, in collaboration with the Bank of Agriculture, plans to provide financial empowerment to livestock farmers to boost productivity and resilience in the sector.
These collective efforts aim to drive the growth of the Nigerian dairy industry, improve the nutritional status of Nigerians, and reduce the nation’s expenditure on milk imports.
The stakeholders’ resolutions at the World Milk Day conference will contribute to impactful policy advocacy and development activities in the sector.