UGANDA – The Dairy Development Authority (DDA) recently announced that the exportation of Uganda’s powdered milk to Algeria in a bid to expand its dairy industry is scheduled to kick off in March.

During the presentation of the dairy performance report for the year 2021/2022 in Kampala, Mr Samson Akankiza, the DDA executive director, said there is a large market for Ugandan dairy products in Algeria.

According to him, business meetings are going to be held in Algeria after technical verification of the regulatory framework of the dairy value chain was carried out last December by an Algerian delegation.

“Algeria’s milk production is generally low and most of their milk products are being imported from other countries. Uganda has quality milk which is organically produced meaning we shall have the best product on the market,” he said.

Uganda is one of the few countries in East Africa to record an oversupply of dairy products and the second-largest dairy producer next to Kenya.

According to data from the DDA, Uganda’s annual milk production in 2018 was recorded at 2.2 billion litres, a gradual increase from the 1.8 billion litres produced in 2012.

As of June 2019, annual milk production in the country had risen to 2.4 billion litres and by 2021 the country was producing 2.8 billion litres of milk annually.

Dairy products are the second most consumed basic foodstuff in Uganda after cereal. The national per capita consumption was 58 litres per year as of 2017, far below the 200 litres per capita consumption recommended by the World Health Organization.

According to a report from the USDA, Algeria, on the other hand, consumes about 4.5 million tonnes of milk annually, as of 2021, 55%of which comes from domestic production.

Over the last five years up to 2021, Algeria’s milk powder imports amounted to between 350,000 and 440,000 tonnes per year.

By shifting its focus towards powdered milk, Uganda is tapping into the most lucrative segment of the Algerian dairy market.

Moreover, access to Algeria will allow Uganda to diversify its outlets in order to sell its dairy surplus driven by production.

The sector has increasingly become an important contributor to foreign exchange for the country, helping it with its balance of trade, the only country in East Africa to have a positive balance of trade in milk products.

The DDA reported that dairy exports increased from US$50 million in 2015 to about US$131.5 million in 2018, and $135.9 million in 2019, while imports stood at about US$5 million in 2018.

According to the authority, Uganda’s dairy sector is now valued at around $1 billion.

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