ETHIOPIA – A second camel milk processing company is opening in Jigjiga town, where the first was also established.

The new brand, called Hurmud, and still in its very early stage, is named after Hurmud Pastoralists Cooperative, whose 56 members are already engaged in supplying camel milk to Jigjiga.

The construction of the processing plant will take place in the coming two months on 4,000sqm already in possession of the major owner of the company, Kelif Abdiyusouf, who has 85pc share, with the other 15pc owned by Abas Wondimu.

The building itself will be one-storey resting on an 18m x 30m plot. The design of the building costs 30,000Br, according to Kelif. The company is expected to be opened in 2016.

Kelif Abdiyusouf, has been in the camel milk business for the last 10 years having a side construction business in the region as well. He used to collect up to 4,500lt of camel milk daily and distribute to the Jijiga region using the three-fridge truck he owns.

The raw camel milk is collected by members of the cooperative from pastoralists. Kelif is chairperson of the co-op whose members can supply up to 9,000lt on a daily basis to the factory and other users.

The company will distribute its milk to Dire Dawa, Addis Abeba, Adama, and Harari, as well as the neighbouring countries of Dijibouti, Somali, and Puntland, said Mohammed Negash, manager of the company.

Up to 5,000lt of camel milk is expected to be processed and put out on the market from raw milk that will be collected from Jijiga and its surroundings, he added.

The first camel milk processing to sell its product was Berwaqo Milk Processing factory, which packs milk under the Hayat brand. It has been distributing this milk for a year now, which it sells for 14Br per half-litre pack in Addis Abeba, Dire Dawa, Djibouti and Somalia.

The company has the capacity to produce up to 2,000lt of camel milk on a daily basis, said Amir Muktar, the owner of Berwaqo.

It is estimated that Ethiopia has 4.5 million camels in Oromia, Afar, Dire Dawa Harari and Somali regions, according to a study by Haromaya University and Milk & Meat Development Institute.

Approximately 56pc of the 393 million litres of camel milk produced locally comes from the Somali region, says Tadesse Guta, deputy director of Milk & Meat Development Institute.

Though some studies rank Ethiopia second in terms of the camel population, it is yet to begin to tap the resource, Tadesse added. Kenya makes better revenue out of camel milk than Ethiopia. Africa is home to 85pc of the world’s camel population.

June 29, 2015;