Story by Stanley James, Business Editor
ZIMBABWE is targeting milk self-sufficiency after production increased by over 14 percent to more than 90 million litres last year.
The country is moving towards achieving the annual national milk requirements of at least 130 million litres per year due to interventions being put in place to restore business confidence.
Data released by the Zimbabwe Association of Dairy Farmers shows that milk production increased from 79,6 million litres in 2021 to more than 91 million litres in 2022.
“The increase in milk production is mainly due to improved health management systems, availing of a dairy revitalisation fund, improved productivity per cow herd, Presidential and command silage schemes among other factors,” said Mrs Paidamoyo Chadoka, Zimbabwe Association of Dairy Farmer’s chief executive officer.
With milk powder imports dropping by 17 percent from 8,9 million kilogrammes in 2021 to 7,4 million kilogrammes in 2022, there is the hope of saving foreign currency and consolidating the current gains.
“Easing or reducing milk powder imports will have a net effect in terms of ensuring that the current gains are sustained, however, benefits of reduced import bill include saving hard cash, creating more jobs and generating revenue to the treasury from taxes,” said Dr Nyasha Kaseke, University of Zimbabwe’s Business School chairman.
The dairy industry has revealed that viability in future will depend on affordable production costs, favourable pricing systems, increased access to finance and stable energy supplies.