To commemorate this year’s World Milk Day (WMD), Outspan Nigeria Limited, a subsidiary of olam food ingredients (ofi), convened members of the Kano Dairy Cooperative, representatives from the Central Bank of Nigeria, local chiefs, and key officials from state and federal ministries of agriculture in Kwanar Dawakin Kudu LGA.
Under this year’s theme ‘Sustainable Dairy: Good for Planet, Good for you’, the day was an opportunity to engage and celebrate the local dairy community as part of Outspan’s broader efforts to promote sustainable farming practices, wider milk consumption, and education for farmers’ children.
Activities organized by Outspan included a lecture on sustainable dairy farming practices for the dairy cooperative members, donation of educational materials such as school bags and textbooks to the children of the dairy farmers, and promotion of the nutritional benefits of milk to encourage wider consumption and improve public health.
Last year, Outspan marked WMD with the distribution of animal feed to dairy farmers, training farmers on sustainability practices and donating a cold truck to the dairy union, and educational materials to farmers’ children.
The efforts form part of the business’ scaled and sustainable local dairy value chain backward integration (BIP) investment which aims to raise the level of milk production in the country in support of the Federal Government’s economic diversification agenda.
Speaking at this year’s event, Manish Khede, Regional Manager, ofi’s dairy business in Nigeria, explained, “Sustainability is critical to ofi’s value proposition to offer ingredients that are good for consumers, farmers, and the world around us.
“Maintaining proper care of cattle herds, natural resources, and land is critical to addressing climate change. This is why we organized a lecture on sustainable dairy farming practices for dairy farmers.”
He added that the business also prioritizes the education of the farmers’ children as this will help to provide them with a buffer for the future. He pointed to the educational materials comprising textbooks and school bags being donated to the children as the business’ way of aiding the children’s learning.
Commenting on milk consumption, Khede continued “According to Healthline, a global health information platform, milk is a good source of many vital nutrients such as calcium, vitamin D and protein. We believe that promoting access to and consumption of fresh and safe milk in Kano State can contribute to healthier communities and productivity too.
Praveen Paulsamy, Vice President of ofi’s dairy business in Nigeria, said, “We are committed to the Federal Government’s economic development agenda. Hence, we’re looking to continue our investment in developing the local dairy value chain to remove the hurdles that have been impeding growth along the chain and the dairy farming communities.”
The representative of the Branch Controller, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Kano, at the event, Lawan Ahmed, said, “The milk industry provides valuable nutrients that support healthy physiological growth among the populace. The players in the industry deserve to be celebrated.”
Garzali Muhammed, the Director of Livestock & Poultry Service, Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Kano explained that “Outspan has been instrumental in enhancing the productivity of the members of Kano Dairy Cooperative. The various backward integration investments embarked upon by the business have had a positive impact on the productivity rate and income levels of the dairy farming community in the state.”
Thanking Outspan for their consistent support of smallholder dairy farmers, Alhaji Usman Abdullahi, the Chairman of Kano Dairy Cooperative said: The Cooperative is delighted to be partnering with Outspan in raising the level of milk production in Nigeria.”