FAO urges Africans to consume more milk

Africans have been urged by Food and Agriculture (FAO) to consume more milk in order to gain from its health benefits. 

This was noted by ECOWAS and Nigeria’s representative at FAO, Fred Kafeero on Tuesday in Abuja while he was  delivering  a keynote address at an event to commemorate the World Milk Day (WMD).

The WMD with the theme: “Sustainability in the dairy sector,” was organised by the Commercial Dairy Ranchers Association of Nigeria.

The World Milk Day is observed every year on June 1 to recognise the importance of milk as a global food.

The envoy said lower consumption of milk could result in stunted growth of children under five and malnutrition in women.

“The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends milk consumption of 210 litres per person per annum but Africa’s average is lower than 40 litres per person.

“Nigeria varies significantly especially with the North where over 90 per cent of the cattle are kept, and where they have about eight litres per person in a year, according to the World Population Review,” he said.

Kafeero who described milk as a natural source of proteins, said it was necessary for building human bodies.

He said milk has important minerals such as calcium, magnesium and phosphorus that play important roles in maintaining strong bones and teeth as well as being rich in B2, B12 and B5.

He said the FAO was determined to collaborate with the International Atomic Energy in supporting national scientists in some countries to optimise livestock reproduction and breeding practices.