UGANDA – Ugandan government through Dairy Development Authority (DDA) has handed over milk equipment to dairy farmers as part of the cleaner milk production campaign which aims at enhancing quality of milk during production, storage and transportation.
The clean milk production campaign which was launched in 2020 aims to provide recommended milk equipment and pasture seeds to farmers to boost milk production as well as quality.
According to the country’s minister for Animal Industry, Mr Bright Rwamira, farmers should use the equipment to produce milk to the quality and safety standards required to compete on both local and international markets.
He noted that many dairy farmers across the country continue to incur losses due to the use of substandard equipment which contaminate the milk making it unsafe for human consumption or factory use.
“Therefore, after receiving this equipment, I am very sure that there will be a continuous improvement in the milk production systems and our milk will effectively compete at both local and regional markets,” he said.
The equipment distributed to the farmers includes 252 milk cans, 176 milking buckets, and 86 milk scoopers. Additionally, at least 15 co-operatives have also received pasture seed which is a source of proteins for their animals.
The Executive Director of DDA said the tools provided should be used by farmers as a guide for buying standard equipment used in milk production, storage, and processing.
Speaking on behalf of the equipment beneficiaries, Ms Deborah Mulumba, a farmer commended the dairy authority for the inputs saying that they will be key in spurring development in milk production.
However, she noted that farmers in rural areas are still faced with challenges of inadequate storage facilities, preservation systems, and marketing.
She urged the government to intervene and solve the challenges to prevent the dependence on middlemen who at times exploit them in terms of farmgate milk prices.
Currently, average milk production in Uganda stands at 4.8 liters per cow, according to the animal industry minister. Cumulatively, the country produces about 3.4 billion liters of milk annually.
During the last financial year, dairy exports increased to US$102 million from US$92.4 million recorded in the financial year 2021/2022.
“The exports are also estimated to rise to US$150 million in this financial year, because we have attracted new markets in the United States, Somalia, Algeria and many others which are in the pipeline,” Mr Rwamirama said.