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New Zealand Milk Products Ethiopia, the company behind Anchor Fortified Milk, signed an agreement with the three month old, Ethiopian Milk Suppliers Association (EMSA) to support the domestic diary sector.

The statement released during the signing ceremony held at Ramada Hotel on Thursday November 10 announced that the two parties will work together to improve Ethiopia’s dairy industry.

“We will work together to make the collection and transportation of raw milk more efficient to make the quality better,” Solomon Mekonnen, Chairman of EMSA, said.

Zeco Kassim, General Manager of New Zealand Milk Products Ethiopia, said that the company is founded on generations of New Zealand dairy farming expertise and is focused on helping  grow the local dairy industry in Ethiopia.

“This partnership allows us to combine our dairy farming knowledge, with the strong local experience of the team at the association, to start to develop a more profitable and sustainable local dairy industry,” he added.

Based on the agreement the New Zealand Milk Products Ethiopia will establish one milk collection center in Chancho area. The center will include standard dairy equipment including stainless steel milk collection cans, a milk storage cold tank and refrigerators.

Experts said these facilities would narrow the value chain gap between the producers and distributers behind improving the quality.

“This is will help us show case our future plan to begin new investments in the country,” Zeco told the media.

“We are undertaking several studies in hopes of expanding  our business in the country,” he added.

He told Capital that the company has allocated about five million birr as a start to implement its corporate social responsibility. “We will use our local resources in the future,” Zeco explained.

Mebratu Meles, State Minister of Industry, who witnessed the signing ceremony, said that the government is keen to expand dairy investment.

He said the production of  Anchor milk will take place in Ethiopia’s new agro processing parks.

New Zealand Milk Products Ethiopia is a joint venture of New Zealand dairy co-operative Fonterra and local partner Faffa Foods.