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‘Technology is key to unlocking dairy sub-sector value chain’

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Managing Director, Tetra Pak West Africa, Oshiokamele Aruna

•Experts decry low consumption in Nigeria
To harness adequately the huge potential of the dairy sub-sector of the Nigerian economy, experts in the industry have canvassed the deployment of technology, which is key from production to consumption of milk in Nigeria and globally.

Speaking at the Tetra Pak Lagos Innovation Workshop, the experts noted that there is a need to bridge the industry knowledge gap through technology, to aid modern processing, marketing and consumption of the products in the country.

The Managing Director, Tetra Pak West Africa, Oshiokamele Aruna, said technology is now a very important part of peoples’ lives and dairy is not left behind, especially as the fourth industrial revolution beckons. He stressed that Nigeria is already jumping the bandwagon even though it is not as the same pace with other countries.

Aruna noted that dairy is a very important aspect of peoples’, and at “Tetra Pak, it is an important aspect of our business

“We believe that with the right nutrition, knowing the right breeds to use for generating milk, helping with transportation and storage among others are ways technology will help with managing the huge potential we have to harness in the dairy industry.”

Aruna said from investigation, the firm discovered that the consumption of dairy is very low in Nigeria, for which it decided to improve and increase consumption, because from a health point of view, dairy is very important.

Calling for government’s support for the sector, Aruna said there is need for new policies to stimulate demand, infrastructure upgrades to help in the transportation of the goods from one point to another, and security is also key to redefining the sector, “above all agriculture should be given serious attention.”

Buttressing Aruna’s claims, the Marketing Director, Solomon Yu, said Tetra Pak plans to tap adequately the untapped opportunities that exist in the Nigerian market when it comes to dairy.

“It is still impossible or slow to reach people with low disposable income to ensure that they consume milk regularly so as to create better solutions for them. We want to meet with re-sellers, NGOs, retailers, among others to see how we can bridge those gaps and create better solution for consumers.

“Dairy milk consumption is still very low in this part of the world compared to other region. We discovered that in Nigeria, dairy consumption is still about 11 litres per capital to Africa’s 20 litres per capital and world’s 40 litres per capital. It is still very low in this part of the world. It is a very nutritious product and should be part of balance diet, especially for kids.”

The Technical Adviser (Youth and Gender), Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD), Mosunmola Umoru, listed ways to address the challenges of low production locally through bridging knowledge gap, access to effective funding and intensifying modern daily processing, marketing and consumption.

According to her, to further unlock the opportunities in the sector, there is a need to focus attention on penetration development; creation of comprehensive policies and plans for the development of the sector, while also creating incentives for local producers, and establishing dairy boards and ease access to inputs.


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