By Raheem Akingbolu
Fan Milk Plc,. a subsidiary of Danone has inaugurated a water treatment plant designed to produce 720 cubic metres of water to be used in its production line and shared with its host community. The inauguration was carried out by the French Ambassador Mr. Jérôme Pasquier at the company’s factory in Ibadan, Oyo state.
Speaking at commissioning ceremony, the Ambassador expressed his delight at Danone’s investment in Nigeria and the improvement of its footprint in the country, adding that he was happy with the impact of Fan Milk in the Nigerian ecosystem.
Managing Director of Fan Milk Plc, Ferdinand Mouko, highlighted the significance of the water treatment project as it attests to Danone’s 2030 goals and growth in Africa, especially in relation to United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 6 and efforts towards the universal availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation.
Some key benefits of the water treatment plant include lowering Fan Milk’s carbon footprint due to reduced chemical and steam consumption at the factory and reduced water demand and wastage in the factory due to less wash time in the production line. The sterile water produced will be utilized within the factory and also supplied as potable water to the community schools in the environs.
The General Secretary Mr. Olakunle Olusanya presented Fan Milk’s Backward Integration Plan to His Excellency, outlining the plan to set up a dairy flagship farm in partnership with Ogun State at the Odeda Farm Institute in Ogun State. The unique selling point of this project is that a Danone Dairy Training Institute will be set up on the farm. Fan Milk is optimistic that this project will contribute to achieving the country’s food security and self-sufficiency targets as well as entrench Danone’s 2030 goals in Nigeria.
Fan Milk is committed to growing the level of dairy farming in Ogun State by direct action and capacity building through training of local farmers. Danone will share its expertise in dairy with Nigeria, as was done in other countries (eg Algeria, Morocco, Egypt) to support local dairy farming and create social and economic impact in the community through job creation and employment for local residents.
After a tour of the factory and production facilities, the Ambassador commended the quality, safety and health standards which were clearly exhibited in the operational site activities. His Excellency also affirmed the French Embassy’s support for Danone as it makes it mark in the dairy industry in Nigeria.
In closing, the Chairman of the Board of Directors Mr. Olayinka Akinkugbe thanked the Ambassador and his delegation for extending the courtesy of visiting Fan Milk’s factory and reiterated that “Fan Milk Plc. is unwavering in its commitment to contributing to the development of the Nigerian economy and the dairy sector in particular”.
The Ambassador’s delegation included Mr. Pascal Furth, Economic Counsellor, Mrs. Laurence Monmayrant, Consul General of France in Lagos and Dr Sonia Darracq, Regional Agricultural Counsellor.