The Ugandan government has said that the livestock sector is attracting more investors especially in dairy processing which in turn is helping farmers earn more from the sector.
President Museveni said Uganda used to spend billions of shillings in importing processed milk mainly from Kenya and other European countries which he said affected the country’s trade balance sheet.
He added that with the coming of investors to invest in livestock value addition, there has been a boost on the governments’ potential to earn more from livestock products such as milk and beef.
“Uganda currently generates 2.2bn litres of milk but consumes only 800m litres of the total produce per year. We currently generate $50m per year from milk sales, but with endeavours like constructing milk processing plants, we shall certainly be making six times of what we are earning now (USD300m) in a few years” said President Museveni while speaking to farmers at Mbarara district, in western Uganda, during the commissioning of Pearl dairy farm one of the milk processing plants in the country.
Museveni noted that Uganda has the capacity to be the leading producer of milk in the region if livestock farmers adopt modern ways of feeding their livestock the way their counterparts in Kenya and many other developed countries do.
He however asked research institutions like the National Agricultural Research organisation (NARO) to support livestock farmers by coming up with new research innovations especially in the areas feeds and breeding which can be easily adopted by farmers to increase both milk and beef production.
“The Influx of investor especially in dairy processing has not only helped in creating employment for ordinary Ugandans but also expanding the country’s tax base.” Museveni has said.
Pearl Dairy Farms Ltd is the agro arm of Midland Group; the plant is built on 15 acres of land with a daily milk processing capacity of 500,000 litres per day and also produces 25 metric tons of powdered milk per day. The dairy facility processes liquid milk to various types of dairy products namely butter oil, Ghee, Skimmed milk powder, full cream and other dairy products.