2021 World Milk Day Photo: Latestly

2021 WMD: Nigerian Government to revive grazing reserves, improve dairy sector ─Agric Minister

*Stakeholders on the occasion of the 2021 World Milk Day called for concerted efforts at increasing milk production in Nigeria as the Federal Government moves enhance the dairy sector through a policy directive and revival of grazing reserves

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

In view of the a target to revive the gracing reserves in the country and enhance the lot of the dairy industry, the Federal Government disclosed that it is working hard to resolve the farmers-herders crisis through the revival of the grazing facility in 21 states of the Federation.

Sabo Nanono, Honourable Minister for Agriculture and Rural Development, stated this at a webinar on Nigeria Dairy Industry at a forum June 1.

The Policy Centre of Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) had organised  the forum to mark the 2021 World Milk Day (WMD), which has the theme, “Sustainability in the Dairy Sector”, Independent report said.

Sabo Nanono, Honourable Minister for Agriculture and Rural Development

The Federal Government’s declaration on the occasion is coming as the Policy Centre of ACCI issued a policy brief on the Nigeria Dairy Sector with far-reaching policy recommendations to deepen and expand the dairy sector of the economy.

Represented at the forum by Mrs. Mercy Otiteh, Nanono stated that the Ministry had mobilised contractors to various sites across the country with a target to revive the gracing reserves.

Work is currently ongoing with monitoring team supervising progress of works at various centres, said the Minister.

While adding that the Federal Government is committed to providing infrastructures that will make the reserves suitable for pastoralist thereby increasing Nigerians local dairy production capacity.

He noted the government is collaborating with local and international partners to improve the relationship between farmer/herder through revitalisation of the grazing reserves urging Nigerians to support government efforts in this direction.

Dr. Al-Mujtaba Abubakar, President of ACCI, commended government efforts at officially releasing the ACCI policy brief on Dairy Sector in Nigeria.

The ACCI Chief urged intensive backward integration within the dairy sector as currently championed by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

Abubakar said: “The major policy thrust of the ACCI-Policy brief on the dairy sub-sector are as follows: Continuation and expansion of the backward integration currently being supported by the Central Bank of Nigeria, and Private-sector-driven implementation of the National livestock transformation plan.

Others are “creation of the private sector driven ranching system, Establishment of a National Dairy Board, training and capacity building of pastoralists and deployment of modern technology to every segment of the dairy business.”

Dr. Kolawole Owoka, Vice-President Agric and Chairman Agric Trade Group, in his remarks on the occasion said concerted efforts should be made to increase local production of milk in Nigeria as to safe the nation from blowing up her foreign reserve on milk importation.

According to him, ending open gracing is in the collective interest of Northerners and Southerners.

The ACCI Vice-President urged governments to fast-track the ongoing works on the gracing reserves across the country.

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