FOUR organisations have set out on a mission to increase Milk Production from 75 million litres a year recorded in 2018 to 120 million litres a year by 2022.
We Effect, a lead partner in the consortium and Zimbabwe association of dairy farmers (ZADF), Zimbabwe Farmers Union (ZFU) and Zimbabwe Dairy Industry Trust have sprung into action in response to the fact that the country now produces only 79 million litres of milk, a far cry from the annual demand of 130 million litres.
The four-year project, aptly named Transforming Zimbabwe Dairy Value Chain for The Future (TRANZ DVC), which seeks to boost milk production by increasing the participation of small-scale farmers, women and youth in the dairy value chain, is being bankrolled by European Union (EU).
The EU is funding the project to the tune of seven million Euros under the Zimbabwe Agricultural Growth Programme (ZAGP) which seeks to tackle challenges in Zimbabwe’s livestock stock sector.
Among other things, ZAGP seeks to address the weaknesses and gaps in Zimbabwe’s livestock value chains that have prevented the sector from optimally increasing productivity, production and incomes.
TRANZ-DVC, one of ZAGP’s flagship projects, began last year and will end in 2022.The initiative aims to address the root causes of underperformance in the dairy value chain (DVC) in Zimbabwe by strengthening the linkages between production, processing and financing.
Under the leadership of We Effect, the ultimate aim of the four participating organisations is to improve the economic, social and environmental performance of the DVC and to create an enabling environment for a sustainable and inclusive dairy sector.
TRANZ-DVC’s work is undertaken in partnership with public and private sectors, NGOs, government service departments, processors and input suppliers. The initiative is currently being implemented in 33 districts in Zimbabwe, with the mandate to double milk production by 2022 in addition to increasing the number of small-scale farmers from 530 to 4530.
According to the TRANZ-DVC project document, the venture will address aspects of the dairy value chain such as feed, genetics / breeds, health and management, poor infrastructure, limited access to energy, limited access to credit, policy as well as dairy value chain linkages.
In order to meet its overall objective of contributing to the creation of a diversified and efficient dairy sector that promotes inclusive green economic growth, the project will facilitate the training of Individual small holder dairy farmers on fodder production, dairy as a business and dairy animal husbandry. The scheme will also capacitate out growers, integrators, small scale processors and feed entrepreneurs.
The project also includes a matching facility where participating dairy farmers will buy a heifer and get one free. Under this initiative, TRANZ DVC will acquire 500 heifers and 8000 sexed semen which will be matched by participating milk processors such as Dendairy, Dairibord Zimbabwe, Kefalos, Prodairy and Nestle Zimbabwe.”
(This is the first of articles on the TRANZ DVC project that will appear in four consecutive editions of the Daily News on Sunday. Every quarter we will track the progress of this critical project. For more information contact Dr Chifamba: WE effect-0774 836 438, Mrs Chadoka: ZADF- 0772 919 240, Mr Zakaria: ZFU -0771 925 887 and Mrs Marecha: ZDIT– 0772 120 978).