As part of Fan Milk’s commitment to the dairy backward integration programme and as part of the Federal Government’s initiative to achieve food self-sufficiency in the country through the National Livestock Transformation Plan (NLTP), Danone (through Fan Milk Plc) committed to establishing a model dairy farm. This commitment was fulfilled thanks to a partnership with Ogun State Government allowing Fan Milk (Danone) to set up its farm at Odeda, Ogun State.
The dairy farm is based on three pillars; the model dairy farm which will incorporate a model, best-in-class dairy farm which shall be replicated across Nigeria in the nearest future, the dairy training institute which is targeted at training and empowering local farmers in the Odeda community in Ogun State and the milk collection centre and outgrowers scheme which will have a social impact on the host community as the biggest dairy hub in the South-Western region of Nigeria.
The farm is receiving support Danone directly, particularly in the area of milk collection and the milk will be used in the production line which will reduce the reliance on imported milk over a long period of time.
Ferdinand Mouko, the Managing Director Fan Milk Plc reiterated the commitment to growing with Nigeria and ensuring that eventually the company will be able manufacture its ice cream and frozen yoghurt using milk sourced locally from cattle on the farm, as well as those aggregated from local farmers at the milk collection centre. He also relayed the projected impact of the dairy farm in Ogun State, which includes empowering 100 farmers in the first year and empowering 500 farmers in the next 5 years and scale the number of pastoral farmers that currently benefit from Fan Milk Danone’s investment in the state. He concluded by thanking His Excellency, Prince (Dr.) Dapo Abiodun, the Executive Governor of Ogun State for his continuous support and encouragement since the inception of the backward integration project.
Special guests of honor that graced the commissioning event include H.E. Olusegun Obasanjo, ably represented by Dr. Olusegun Ariyo; Senior Special Adviser to the President on Development Policy, Professor Mohammed Adaya Salisu; The Honourable Minister of Agriculture ably represented by Engr G O Oseni, Honourable Commissioner for Agriculture, Ogun State, Dr. Adeola Odedina; Honourable Commissioner for Industry, Trade and Investment, Ogun State, Mrs. Kikelomo Longe; royal fathers of the day; the Olu of Odeda, Oba David Ishola Olorunnishola; and the Alara of Ilara, Oba Dr. Olufolarin Kayode Ogunsanwo; senior delegates from Danone Global and West Africa, including Senior Vice President Partners, Danone, Paolo Tafuri; Chairman, Fan Milk Plc, Mr Olayinka Akinkugbe; Managing Director, Fan Milk West Africa & Ghana, Mr Yeo Ziobeieton; as well as representatives from the Odeda Community; amongst others.
The Executive Governor, Ogun State, H.E. Prince (Dr.) Dapo Abiodun- MFR lauded the multimillion-dollar investment as being strategically aligned with the present administration’s drive to foster relationships that enhance internally generated revenue. He said “the growth of this project in about a year since the MOU was signed is symbolic of our administration’s commitment to public-private partnerships. We are happy to be part of this success story. I want to assure all stakeholders that our administration will follow up and sustain its commitment to this project by continued support through the Ministry of Agriculture and all other relevant agencies, in order to make good of Fan Milk- Danone’s investment.”
The French Ambassadrice, Her Excellency, Madame Emmanuelle Blatmann commended the company’s investment in the country and reiterated France’s pride at the milestone achievement and the company’s role in opening up more avenues for bilateral relations between France and Nigeria.
The Chairman of Fan Milk Plc, Mr. Olayinka Akinkugbe recognised the support from the Ogun State government as an investor-friendly state that has supported Fan Milk’s response to CBN’s dairy backward integration programme. He said, “This partnership is one of the major investments of Danone because of the social impact it will have on the host community by training dairy farmers in Ogun state, in line with the company’s efforts to build farmers’ capacity and reiterate its commitment to fostering collaboration across the agricultural value chain, for a sustainable dairy farming and ecosystem. It is about the 2,000 people or more who would be impacted through this initiative and the change we seek to bring to Nigeria’s food architecture. We are investing across the value chain and ensuring the support of the long-term ambitions of the state.”
The Senior Vice President, Partners Danone, Paolo Tafuri, commented on the importance of Nigeria to Danone, saying, “I should mention that we have a strong commitment at Danone to grow in and with Nigeria. Therefore we have chosen Nigeria as the destination of our first dairy farm investment in Sub Saharan Africa. I am also happy to see the passion that our people have towards the growth of agriculture and the dairy sector in Nigeria. At Danone, partnership is also very important to us. That is why we are collaborating with the Ogun state government to support the CBN’s developmental policies and growth plans. You must know that we support local production, and this is why the raw materials involved in the farm’s supply chain processes, including livestock feed, are all sourced in Nigeria.”
Danone is working to develop and promote regenerative models of agriculture that protect soils, empower farmers through dairy trainings and promote animal welfare. This investment will be a continuation of Danone’s efforts to boost local milk production across its host communities in Africa, as is ongoing in Algeria, Morocco and Egypt and North-East Africa. Danone partners with farmers globally and is committed to working with stakeholders across the value chain to address the challenges associated with food security.
The Managing Director of Fan Milk West Africa, Yeo Ziobeieton, further reiterated the importance of the partnership to deliver the desired impact for the West and Sub-Saharan Africa region and thanked the Ogun State government for its continued support.
The representative of the Director of Development Finance, CBN, Mrs. Oluyemisi Olukoya (Deputy Director / Head Development Finance Office CBN Abeokuta Branch), emphasised the importance of Fan Milk and Danone’s investment, which she described as a timely intervention for building capacity, creating jobs and contributing to the country’s socio-economic development plans. She said, “We are quite impressed with what we have witnessed today. I want us to know that this project is in line with the Federal Government’s initiative for backward integration and is beneficial to the Ogun state value chain in particular. The model dairy farm for backward integration, the dairy institute and the milk collection centre will go a long way to build capacity, generate employment, and have a social impact on local dairy farmers in the area. We commend Fan Milk Danone for their commitment towards this project through self-funding. The Central Bank of Nigeria is willing and ready to collaborate to achieve your laudable goal of making Fan Milk-Danone Dairy Farm, Odeda, the biggest dairy farm in South-Western Nigeria.”
Fan Milk Plc was established in 1961 selling healthy and nutritious dairy products. It is now part of the Danone group, a world leading food company. Since this investment from Danone there have been some phenomenal changes in the operations and business performance of Fan Milk. The business management has been re-ordered and synergised to include Danone’s Early Life Nutrition (ELN) business, responsible for the distribution of Danone’s infant milk formula in Nigeria.
Fan Milk Plc operates its head office and production facility in Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria. Fan Milk currently employs over 800 people, with a unique ecosystem that contributes to economic empowerment – currently engaging over 17,745 vendors and 1,200 agents to distribute its nutritious frozen dairy products to individuals and families across the country. Further to this, the introduction of Danone’s Early Life Nutrition products also broadens the scope of Fan Milk’s impact in Nigeria.