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Nigeria Launches National Dairy Policy to Boost Self-Sufficiency and Cut $1.5 Billion Import Bill

Nigeria 11.06.2024
Source: The DairyNews
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The Federal Government of Nigeria has officially launched the National Dairy Policy (2023-2028), which aims to achieve self-sufficiency in milk production and bolster the country's standing in the global dairy market. This strategic initiative was unveiled during the World Milk Day celebrations at the NAF Conference Centre in Abuja, as announced by the federal ministry of information and National Orientation.
Nigeria Launches National Dairy Policy to Boost Self-Sufficiency and Cut $1.5 Billion Import Bill
Vice President Alhaji Kashim Shettima, represented by Dr. Kingsley Uzoma, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Agribusiness and Productivity Enhancement, highlighted the policy's goals at the launch. The policy intends to address significant challenges in the dairy sector, including outdated breeding practices and inefficiencies in production processes, with a broader aim of reducing Nigeria's heavy reliance on dairy imports, which cost the nation approximately $1.5 billion annually.

Dr. Uzoma pointed out that while Nigerians consume around 1.6 billion liters of milk and dairy products each year, domestic production falls short of meeting this demand. The policy's objectives include enhancing dairy farming practices, boosting investment in dairy processing and preservation, and strengthening regulatory frameworks to support industry growth.

Significant contributions from both local and international companies, such as FrieslandCampina WAMCO and Danone’s Fan Milk, have been noted. These firms have launched extensive backward integration projects designed to increase local milk production, create jobs, and stimulate local economic development.

Senator Aliyu Abdullahi, the Honorable Minister of State for Agriculture and Food Security, provided context on the policy's background, linking it to earlier initiatives such as the Dairy Transformation Plan and the National Industry Policy from the 2016 Livestock and Dairy Retreat. These initiatives were merged and refined through extensive stakeholder consultations and received final approval from the Federal Executive Council in May 2023.

The policy is seen as a critical step in President Bola Ahmed Tinubu's administration's efforts to enhance national production security, with long-term aspirations of exporting dairy products to other African nations under the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA).