Our expert Berend travelled for the fifth time to Uganda to support the TIDE project. A four-year program funded by the Embassy of the Netherlands and implemented by SNV.
The project’s overall goal is poverty reduction through improved dairy farm incomes, household nutrition and employment opportunities for 20,000 farmers. This will be done by improving: dairy farm productivity; commercial milk quality; pro-active dairy sector regulation and dairy household nutrition.
In our last update (July this year) we wrote about the distribution of the milk testing equipment and the preparation for this. Berend’s most recent mission was all about the installation of the equipment. And that sounds easier than it was!
Three of the participating factories and the Dairy Authority installed the equipment but to get it running was quite a task. After having overcome some start-up issues, teething problems, the equipment was calibrated and started at the milk collection centers. In thhe first test rounds some milk was unduly refused and the scales indicated higher volumes than the measuring bucket at the collection point. The management of the collection point acted firmly and solved the issues. Little by little, the personal got the hang of it and the testing improved.
With this, one of the most important steps in the program has been taken. The next step will be the development of SOPs and registration systems. The farmers also need to be informed and the equipment has to been installed at the other collection points. Plenty of work to be done in 2018!