In a new public-private partnership, the Kaduna State Government and farmer-owned Arla Foods are committing to further develop a long-term sustainable dairy industry and local dairy sector in Nigeria by helping 1,000 small scale farmers create better livelihoods.
Already active in existing development projects within the dairy industry, Kaduna State, Arla and the federal government are now engaging further by signing a new Memorandum of Understanding.
While the state and the government would offer 1,000 nomadic dairy farmers permanent farm lands with access to water, Arla would be the commercial partner that would purchase, collect, process and bring the local milk to market.
Nigeria’s population – set to reach close to 400 million people by 2050 – is among the fastest-growing of any nation in the world, and already there is growing consumer demand for affordable nutrition in the country.
The new public-private partnership entered is the first of its size in Nigeria and is an important step in developing the local dairy sector.
Kaduna State Governor Nasir El-Rufai welcomed the project with Arla as a different and sustainable vision for the development of the livestock industry in Nigeria.
“We are very pleased to collaborate with Arla Foods to grow and further improve our nation’s dairy industry. With our different competencies, together we can empower local farmers and promote market-driven sustainable dairy development in Nigeria,” El-Rufai said.
Kaduna State and the federal government said they are committed to improving the structural conditions for the nomadic farmers. Instead of continuously moving in search of grazing areas and water, land will be set up for the farmers to permanently base themselves and have opportunities to expand their farms.
Securing the infrastructure such as roads, power and water, which are necessary to process and bring the milk to market, is also part of the public commitment.
The project will primarily be funded by loans provided by the Central Bank of Nigeria and guaranteed by the local state. As the commercial partner, Arla will invest in establishing milk collection centres. These will be pivotal to Arla’s role as a processor of the milk produced by the farmers