The governments of Algeria and Uganda are in talks aimed at sealing a deal that will see Kampala supplying milk worth US$500 million to the North African country.
“I met H.E Cherif Qualid, the Algerian Ambassador to Uganda. I am happy to hear that Algeria is interested in buying milk worth US$500 million from us. Therefore, the Joint Ministerial Council should make plans to complete the signing of all necessary documents with Algeria,” President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda said on Tuesday.
According to statistics obrained from Diary Development Authority (FY 2020/2021), milk production in Uganda is estimated to have increased from 2.08 billion litres in 2015 to 2.64 billion litres in 2020.
By the end of 2021 milk production is estimated to reach 2.81 billion short of the target of 3.0 billion litres.
Dairy exports in the country have reached a record high of 358.6billion UGX in the last four years. The export values nearly doubled compared to last FY 2019/20.
Dairy products are the second most consumed staple food in Algeria, following cereals.
Due to the local insufficient production of milk caused by the absence of a robust national milk industrial chain, Algeria imports between 250,000 up to 280,000 tons of powdered milk per year.
Algeria, located in the Northern fringes of Africa, is part of the Maghreb countries (Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia) that have a long tradition with dairy products’consumption.
Diary production in this part of Africa is hampered by frequent drought seasons affecting the irrigated areas, as water volumes within dams is not sufficient to support an important demand from various crops, particularly in summer time, where temperatures might reach 50°C.
Algeria also faces other limitations to technological advancement of milk self-sustaining is the high level of microbial contamination originated from poor hygienic practices in all stages of the chain, starting by the milking, collection, transporting/distribution, and storage of milk.