MAURICE KIBOYE, WILHELM DUEHNEN, ABDIRAHIM SALAH GURE
Veterinaires Sans Frontieres / Tierärzte ohne Grenzen, Kenya
Veterinaires Sans Frontieres / Tierärzte ohne Grenzen, Somalia
Milk and other dairy products are important food and items of trade in Somalia. However, the actual local milk supply does not meet ever increasing demand. In spite of popularity for fresh milk, the quality and marketing of milk remains poor due to inadequate regulatory system, quality assurance systems and low knowledge on hygiene practices. The project implemented by VSFG focused on three areas for improvement of dairy value chain: i) strengthening the public sector to be an effective regulator of food hygiene ii) supporting the private sector and public-private partnership for economic development of the dairy sector, and iii) developing human resources and provision of appropriate equipment for handling milk to reduce health risk for consumers. In the process, it came out that improved hygiene does not only reduce health risks but that higher revenues were realised at household level. Use of aluminum cans increased amount of fresh milk sold by a vendor per day from 26.5 to 45 liters; number of customers from 25 to 35 and price of a liter of milk from $0.61 to $ 0.77 and a profit margin of $0.16 per liter. Since fresh milk was found to have the highest value, interventions to improve storage were initiated: replacement of plastic cans by aluminum cans, a shorter transportation time, milk cooling facilities, and milk testing before bulking. At times of poor accessibility, milk processing becomes necessary to produce storable products; Ghee and sour milk. Interventions in the dairy value chain promote gender equity since women play complementary roles; small ruminants are milked by women, while camels are milked by men, transporting milk is done by men and trading dairy products is carried out by women. In order to establish effective regulatory frameworks for the dairy value chain, community projects can serve as role models. Even with interest from public institutions changes in the sector will take time until favourable macroeconomic policy environment is created. But in the meantime, small scale dairy value chain involving business development such as Village Milk Centers and women groups are representing a successful model for sustainability in rural development.
Keywords: Capacity building, dairy value chain, food security, gender equity policy, natural resource management, pastoralism