FG launches National Dairy Policy to attain self-sufficiency and boost industry in Nigeria

The Federal Government has unveiled the National Dairy Policy (2023-2028) aimed at guiding both public and private sector investors towards achieving self-sufficiency in milk production and enhancing global competitiveness.

This announcement was made by the federal ministry of information and National Orientation on Friday.

Speaking at the official launch during the 2024 World Milk Day celebration at the NAF Conference Centre, Abuja, the Vice President of Nigeria, Alhaji Kashim Shettima, GCON, represented by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Agribusiness and Productivity Enhancement, Dr. Kingsley Uzoma, emphasized the government’s commitment to transforming the dairy industry by addressing key challenges such as outdated breeding practices and midstream inefficiencies.

The National Dairy policy

The National Dairy Policy (2023-2028) is a strategic framework aimed at guiding both public and private sector investments in the Nigerian dairy industry.

  • It seeks to achieve self-sufficiency in milk production and enhance global competitiveness by addressing key challenges such as the lack of modern best practices for crossbreeding and calving, and midstream production issues.
  • The policy is being launched to transform the dairy industry in Nigeria by reducing the country’s dependency on dairy imports, which currently cost $1.5 billion annually.
  • The goal is to increase domestic milk production to meet local demand and eventually export dairy products under the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA).

The policy aims to improve dairy farming practices, attract investment in dairy processing and preservation, and establish better regulatory frameworks to support growth and development in the sector.

“The National Dairy Policy aims to transform the dairy industry by addressing key obstacles, including the lack of modern global best practices for crossbreeding and calving, and midstream challenges.”

“Currently, Nigeria spends $1.5 billion annually on importing dairy products due to a production deficit. Nigerians consume an average of 1.6 billion liters of milk and its products, but domestic production is insufficient to meet this demand,” Uzoma stated.

Dr. Uzoma highlighted significant investments by local and international firms such as FrieslandCampina WAMCO and Danone’s Fan Milk.

  • These companies have initiated extensive backward integration projects to boost local milk production and foster a strong market for dairy products, aiming to reduce imports and enhance food and nutritional security.

“These projects involve setting up state-of-the-art dairy farms and processing facilities, creating thousands of jobs, and promoting local economic development.”

“Comprehensive development strategies are crucial to overcoming the challenges faced by the Nigerian dairy industry.”

“The Federal Government will continue to support such efforts by sustaining an enabling environment for capital inflow and technology transfer,” he added.

What you should know

According to Senator Aliyu Abdullahi, CON, the Honorable Minister of State for Agriculture and Food Security, the national dairy policy (2023-2028) is not the first of its kind.

He discussed the evolution of the dairy industry framework, noting that the Dairy Transformation Plan and the National Industry Policy were key outcomes of the 2016 maiden Livestock and Dairy Retreat.

  • The Nigerian maiden livestock and dairy retreat in June 2016 brought together stakeholders to discuss strategies for enhancing the livestock and dairy industries.
  • Key topics included policy development, innovation, and technology to boost productivity and support private sector investment.
  • The retreat also emphasized capacity building to improve infrastructure and access to finance for the industry.
  • These documents were merged, reviewed through stakeholder meetings, and finally approved by the Federal Executive Council in May 2023, demonstrating the government’s commitment to revitalizing the dairy sector.
  • This is part of the Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s administration to achieving national production security, with a long-term goal of exporting dairy products to other African countries under the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA).
  • The Dairy Policy’s highlights include creating a supportive environment, job creation, import reduction, establishing milk production targets and collection centers, forming cooperative business structures, and attracting massive investments.
  • Director of Animal Husbandry Services, Mrs. Winnie Lai-Solarin, provided a historical overview of Nigeria’s dairy industry, tracing farming practices back to the 19th century with Fulani pastoralists and other ethnic groups.
  • She also discussed current challenges and opportunities, such as improving access to finance, technology, and training for smallholder farmers, and infrastructure development for milk collection.



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