This article was added by the user . TheWorldNews is not responsible for the content of the platform.


MBABANE – It is still a long way to go before the country’s dairy industry becomes self-sufficient, following a continued surge in imports.

According to the Eswatini Dairy Board (EDB) quarterly report, volumes of imports have increased by over two million to about 7.9 million litres/kilogrammes in the second quarter as compared to the first three months of the year. They were at about 5.5 million between January and March, this year.


This shows a 30.32 per cent increase. The country still imports products like emasi (sour milk), yoghurt, fresh milk and fresh cream, among others, which are sufficiently produced in the country. There are various investment opportunities in all the stages of the dairy value chain that are exposed and yet to be exploited. The dairy industry in the country when calculated is worth over E1 billion  This is inclusive of the values of imports, local milk produced, dairy farm establishments, and value of dairy products processed in the country. With a robust investment in the dairy sector, the projected figures, especially imports, may decline with a significant increase in domestic production and job opportunities.


Other opportunities are available in feed manufacture, which include hay making and dairy feed manufacturing.  The industry boasts of various investment opportunities and encourages investment into it. The dairy industry in Eswatini consists of a number of industry role-players, which includes farmers (smallholder, medium and large-scale dairy farmers), processors, distributors, retailers, and consumers. In addition, there are also importers, exporters and transistors of dairy products. Meanwhile, consumption of dairy products was estimated to be 88.44 million litres as of 2020.  About 76.6 per cent of the dairy products consumed in the country come through imports and the remainder is produced locally. Domestic production continues to fall short of the rising demand for dairy products in the country. 

The local dairy market is said to be still boasting a lot of potential which needs to be exploited. Emasi (sour milk) is one of the main products produced locally. Sour milk also imported in high quantities, which demonstrates the availability of a market that is yet to be exploited. In a bid to protect the dairy industry, back in 2020; EDB  proposed a 40 per cent import levy which was supposed to kick in the following year. The Eswatini Dairy Board (EDB) had proposed that the import levy be charged on all dairy products which are sufficiently produced locally, such as emasi (sour milk), yoghurt, fresh milk and fresh cream. The levy was supposed to kick in on July 1, but there were reportedly registered concerns from some of the stakeholders who felt the timing could be bad due to the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.