The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Alhaji Sabo Nanono said, 60 percent of dairy products consumed locally are imported with about $1.5 billion spent yearly.
Dairy products or milk products are a type of food produced from or containing the milk of mammals, most commonly cattle, water buffaloes, goats, sheep, and camels.
Dairy products include food items such as yogurt, cheese and butter.
Nanono said the country’s milk production accounts for only 13 percent of West African production and 0.01 percent of global dairy output adding that the consumption of aggregated and bulked milk is less than 20 percent of the local potential.
The minister explained that the country’s dairy industry is largely subsistence and consists of local milk production, importation, processing, marketing and consumption presently.
He however stressed the need to harness the potential in diary sector in order to address some socio-economic and national herd management issues.
“The consumption of aggregated and bulked milk is less than 20 per cent of the local potential. Nigeria’s milk production accounts for only 13 per cent of West African production and 0.01per cent of global dairy output.
“The gap between supply and demand for dairy products is widening as a result of increase in population and urbanisation.
“The per capita consumption of milk is eight litres per year representing very low consumption levels when compared with the global averages of 44 litres of milk (FAOSTAT, 2019). Consequently, the long neglect of the livestock sector has put a lot of burden on the import bills of the country.
“About $5billion worth of food is imported yearly into the country out of which milk and dairy products account for $1.2-1.5 billion (according to Central Bank of Nigeria 9CBN) 2019). Hence, the annual dairy consumption is met by 60 per cent imports and 40 per cent local production,” he said.
“This requires the buy-in of national and multinational stakeholders. To facilitate this growth, the Ministry is presently collaborating with the Federal Ministry of Industry Trade and Investment (FMITI), Raw Material Research Development Council (RMRDC), CBN, Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning and the private sector to promote and develop the local dairy industry.
“This will facilitate the process of evolving a National Dairy Policy that will articulate a clear road map and strategies for the attainment of our development aspirations in the dairy industry,” the minister added.