The initiative sees certified dairy farmers from the Netherlands train and advise Nigerian farmers on best dairy farming practices, under FrieslandCampina’s Dairy Development Programme (DDP).
The Dutch farmers will engage local farmers on dairy farming practices, including animal health and welfare, farm record keeping, feeding and watering, calf-rearing, milking hygiene, cow fertility, hoof care, housing, and barn design. The two-week program was launched in Oyo State.
Corporate affairs director, FrieslandCampina WAMCO, Ore Famurewa, said the program aims to improve milk quality and increase milk production on dairy farms.
Famuwera said the visit from Dutch farmers is the first advisory mission to Nigeria under the FrieslandCampina–Agriterra partnership, which was set up in 2011 and renewed in 2015.
“Our organization wants to positively influence the development of rural areas and dairy farming communities in emerging economies,” Famuwera said.
“This is already contributing to higher incomes for farmers and better living standards for their families as well as safeguarding local food security in these markets.”
Attracting younger farmers
One of the objectives of FrieslandCampina WAMCO’s DDP is to make the dairy sector more attractive for younger generations. During the mission, training, technical assistance and consultancy services are being given to farmers and local extension workers that are engaged by FrieslandCampina WAMCO.
The program will also provide intensive practical training and guidance for selected dairy farmers who rear crossbreeds on their farms. Each of these farmers will receive two days of specialized training on how to achieve the best yields.
“Ultimately, we have created a platform where expert dairy farmers and their local counterparts talk to each other in the farmer’s language to improve their farm practices, co-create solutions to issues and generally learn new and better ways of dairy farming. Beneficiaries of this training will in turn train other farmers to help improve Nigeria’s dairy farming industry,” Famurewa said.