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Thursday, May 23, 2024

How is Nestle Pakistan Empowering Dairy Farmers?

Nestle Pakistan has pledged to improve the livelihood of Pakistan's agriculture and dairy farmers through its Agricultural Services for the purpose of farmers capacity building, farm mechanization and transformation of farms in accordance to modern techniques. The company is also committed to build sustainable farm practices and Agripreneurship for female dairy farmers of the country.

News Desk |

Nestle Pakistan, in commitment with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDGs), is working to transform the livelihood of the dairy farmers through its Agricultural Services. The company’s ambition towards Creating Shared Values (CSV) is the main driving force behind its contribution towards strengthening the community of farmers.

Other than its global and local obligations, the company believes that its health is closely linked to the resilience of the communities it operates in.

Pakistan, a natural resource rich country, has a strong agriculture sector that accounts for 20.9 percent of its GDP. Being a developing country, more than 60 percent of its population resides in rural areas which, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN, amount to 113 million people. Moreover, statistics show that 45 percent of Pakistan’s labor class constitutes of agricultural farmers out of which 36.2 percent are men and 75.4 percent are women.

The objective of the initiative is to develop profitability of the farms and to enhance sustainable operations. Through this project, Nestle aims to improve efficiency and quality of milk production. 

21.2 million hectares of Pakistan’s land is cultivated and agriculture-friendly of the total 79.6 million hectares of land. Almost 80 percent of the cultivated land is also irrigated with the world’s largest intricate irrigation system.

Pakistan is among the top ten global producers of wheat, cotton, oranges, sugarcane, mango and dates. It is also the 13th largest producer of rice in the world. The major crops produced in the country accounts for 6.5 percent of the GDP. Another 11 per cent of the country’s GDP is contributed by the livestock sector which employs approximately 35 million people; hence contributing significantly to the economy of the country.

Nestle Pakistan’s Agriculture Services

The Agricultural Services of the company are focused on improving the socio-economic conditions of the farmers. The services provide farmers with comprehensive and modern solutions on dairy and agriculture for efficient production. These solutions are provided by a specialized team with expertise in agriculture and dairy farming.

The services provided by Nestle Pakistan are focused on various aspects of farming and agriculture including the development of farms, training of farmers, entrepreneurship ventures, importing efficient livestock and other significant areas.

Read more: Nestle Pakistan bags Sustainability award for the third time in a row

Dairy Farms’ Transformation is one such initiative provided under Nestlé’s Agricultural Services. The objective of the initiative is to develop profitability of the farms and to enhance sustainable operations. Through this project, Nestle aims to improve efficiency and quality of milk production.

Moreover, the Agriculture Services of the company are also focusing to enhance the quality of raw milk via import of superior cows and setting up on-farm chilling facilities. Reportedly, Nestle has successfully inducted 9,000 cows with superior genetic potential that has significantly contributed in farm milk production growth and improved milk quality.

Nestlé’s Agricultural Services is also focused largely on the Capacity Building of Farmers through its drive to transform and polishing skills of dairy farmers to become professional farmers. Through its comprehensive dairy farming extension programs the company aims to implement advanced farming practices. So far the company in collaboration with International Finance Corporation (IFC) has conducted on farm trainings by local and international agricultural trainers and jointly published a comprehensive guide on dairy farming.

Nestlé Agriculture team also helped their farmers to improve managerial and entrepreneurial skills, resulting in better farm operational efficiency. Based on the success of modernized pilot farms which served as lighthouses of dairy farming, the model was replicated in other dairy farms which not only enhanced the entrepreneurial skills of dairy farmers but also improved profitability of their farms.

Nestlé Pakistan has partnered with the Government of Punjab’s Agriculture Department to support local farmers to take up drip irrigation to protect the country’s water resources.

Agricultural Services of the company have greatly contributed towards Farm Mechanization that focuses on inculcating modern technological techniques in farming. The company has installed digital heat detection & health management systems for cows at Nestlé training farm with the purpose to educate progressive farmers on the importance and benefits of technology in farming.

Nestlé’s Collaboration with Commercial Lenders for Farm Development Schemes

In order to implement its Agricultural Services Nestle had collaborated with seven commercial banks in 2018 with an objective to finance farmers. The Services including Farm Infrastructure Improvement, Cow Purchase and Farm Mechanization were at the core of this financial lending. According to a report published in 2018 by Nestle, Rs 634 million had been disbursed through this collaboration alone.

Farmers in Pakistan require hefty financial assistance due to the lack of government support, however, farmers at Nestle are provided with reliable financial assistance to fulfill their needs. Reportedly, farmers at Nestle Farms have availed Rs 634 million out of which Rs 127 million was spent on farm infrastructure and Rs 507 was spent on cow financing.

Women Agripreneurship- Nestlé Pakistan’s Initiative for Female Farmers

Female farmers in Pakistan constitute a larger number than male farmers; out of the total farming labor class in Pakistan 75.4 percent of them are female farmers. Nestle acknowledges the major role women play in the rural agriculture/dairy sector of Pakistan and hence is working to facilitate female farmers to the maximum.

Read more: Nestle’s Rural Sales Program helps women out of poverty

Through its Agripreneurship initiative for women, Nestle has successfully trained 3000 rural on Best Farm Practices in 2018. The program aims to strengthen capacity building and develop support for women entrepreneurs to start and help grow their business ideas. So far 11 rural women have benefited from the entrepreneur funding provided by Nestle’s Agricultural Services. Moreover, 300 female milk suppliers were also made a part of Nestlé’s milk collection value chain.

Nestle has also setup a cellular network based SMS advisory service to provide information pertinent to weather changes, disease outbreaks with additional farming related messages to farmers. Thousands of farmers have been enrolled in the cellular advisory services to access dairy-based knowledge to advance their farming skills and techniques that help them improve productivity, reduce costs, and increase income while also getting maximum benefits from mobile phone usage.

Nestlé Pakistan’s Sustainable Agriculture Initiative

Nestlé Pakistan’s commitment to UNSDGs has been playing a pivotal role in contributing to agricultural economy through dairy development. In line with its sustainable-world ambition, Nestlé Pakistan aims to further contribute to agriculture economy through developing professional suppliers for other agricultural raw materials such as fruits, cereals and vegetables.

Nestlé Pakistan has partnered with the Government of Punjab’s Agriculture Department to support local farmers to take up drip irrigation to protect the country’s water resources. At present, the yearly capita availability of water in Pakistan is estimated at about 1,100 cubic meters; below 1,000 cubic meters, countries begin experiencing chronic water stress according to Population Action International. Vast majority of the country’s water resources – some 90 percent – is used for agriculture, while the remaining share is split equally between the industry and domestic use.

Read more: Nestle walks out from ‘sustainable’ palm oil body

The company has so far installed water drips on 107 acres as of 2018 that has saved 301 liters of water annually; these farms are located in various parts of Punjab. Nestle Pakistan has pledged to increase the drip average from 107 to 143 acres to save 400 liters this year.