The European Union funds dairy sector improvements in northern Cameroon

The European Union has funded a set of small scale dairy processing plants in Northern Cameroon, increasing the country’s milk processing capacity by 2000 litres. The Agricultural Productivity Enhancement Program (SAPEP) has reportedly cost XAF13.1bn ($23.7m).

The dairy investment program is the last component of SAPEP, which has also focused on crop diversification in cotton producing areas and boosting the cocoa and coffee sectors.

The new dairy processing plants are located in the cities of Garoua, Maroua, Meiganga and Ngaoundéré. They are designed to help increase the production of pasteurized milk, yogurt, butter, cheese and ice cream. They form part of a picture of increasing investments this year in the food sector in Cameroon.

In August this year, The Agropastoral and Industrial Company of Ngaoussai announced it would build a factory for the production of dairy products such as milk, cheese, yogurt, as well as and biogas. The factory will be located in the Adamaoua region, which is known for cattle farming.

Reports at the time noted that two dairies built in Ngaoundéré and Meiganga by the Cameroonian government have largely sat idle for the past five years even though Cameroon has an average production deficit of over 170,000 tonnes of milk per year.

Also in August, pasta manufacturer Africa Food Manufacture (AFM) has signed a XAF13bn ($23.4m) investment agreement with Cameroon’s investment promotion agency, API, to build a durum flour production plant.

In June, Togolese dairy and fruit juice manufacturer Top Food announced it was building a new $9.43m factory in Cameroon. The new factory will produce condensed milk and fruit juice, and comes as the Cameroonian government offers incentives for manufacturers investing in the country.

Further back, in April 2018, Nestlé opened a new $5m production unit for its range of Nido fortified powdered milk in Douala. With an annual capacity of 5,500 tonnes, the factory was designed to supply the Cemac market with Nestlé’s Nido and Nido Forti Choco products.