TANZANIA – Tanzania is set to welcome its first-ever milk processing plant following interest from a local investor to set up the facility to help improve the milk production sector in the country.

In the past years, Tanzania has been forced to spend a lot of money on the importation of powder milk due to a shortage of the required technology in the country.

In an interview with The Daily News, Dr George Msalya, registrar of the Tanzania Dairy Board said that the country spends approximately TZS640 million (US$270,000) per week and TZS15 billion (US$6.4 million) per year to import powder milk and other milk products.

“The envisaged plant will play a meaningful role in helping to develop milk production sub-sector in Tanzania, but also the factory which is currently under construction in the Iringa region will help the government to save a total of 640m/- that is being used weekly to import milk products from overseas,” he said.

The installation operations for the new milk processing plant are anticipated to begin in March this year with the financial capital standing at TZS1 billion (US$ 428,265).

For the facility to run smoothly, sufficient raw milk needs to be available as one litre of powdered milk is produced from a total of 8 litres of fresh raw milk, according to Dr George Msalya.

He also added that the country’s poor investment in Ultra-high temperature processing technology has deprived them of opportunities to benefit from exporting milk products to potential international markets.

There are only five companies in Tanzania that make use of UHT technology facilities and these are Azam Milk, Tanga Fresh Limited, Milkcom, ASAS Dairies and Galaxy Food.

The available milk factories in Tanzania have the capacity to process 871,700 litres of milk in a day but due to challenges such as the low pace in the use of UHT technologies, the factories only process approximately 207,050 litres which is about 25% of their capacity.

“Despite being endowed with all potential needs to improve the performance of the dairy sub-sector, the country still lags behind when it comes to production and processing of milk products due to poor investment in modern technologies as well as crossbreed dairy cattle.” Said the TDB’s registrar.

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