by Rabecca Mwila
The Dairy Association of Zambia (DAZ) has appealed to Government to construct more Milk Collection Centres (MCC) in the country to mop up all the milk produced by farmers. Speaking during a media interaction session held at DAZ head office n Lusaka’s show grounds recently, Mr Jeremiah Kasalo, Executive Manager, said there was need for 200 additional Centres as the current 64 were insufficient to contain all the milk produced.
He said 60% of the milk produced in the country went uncollected with most of it going to waste due to the limitation in infrastructure which include MCC structures and the raw milk bulking tanks. He added that a lot of the collected milk went sour and was rejected by processors as the travel time for the farmers to the MCC was long due to long distances.
“Many of our dairy farmers lose out because their milk is rejected by processors as it gets sour by the time it reaches the MCC”, he said. Mr Kasalo noted that with more MCCs built, dairy farmers will have shorter distances to cover to deliver their milk and chances of the milk being rejected by processors would be reduced adding that farmers will equally earn an income and better their lives.
Increase in import duty
He also thanked government through the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Livestock and fisheries for its efforts in aiding DAZ in creating a level playing field and competitive business environment for the locally produced raw milk by raising the import duty on full cream milk powder from 5% in the 2018 national budget to 15% in the 2019 national budget.
He appealed to dairy farmers in the country to take advantage of the business opportunity that government had created through the raised milk import duty and increase milk production which will translate into increased income for them.
Contact Miriam Mbazima of the Dairy Association of Zambia at 097-760-0458 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.