Making a difference in Africa

Economic growth in Sub-Saharan Africa is on the upswing but poverty rates are still high.

We’re making dairy affordable and accessible.

In countries such as Ethiopia, many people earn just $2 a day.
They want to have dairy in their diet but struggle to afford it.

Fonterra wants to make a difference to people’s lives by making dairy nutrition accessible to those who may otherwise have to go without.

Our milk powders deliver essential, high-quality nutrition to people who need it at affordable prices.

Africa’s health depends on improved nutrition.

Our fortified milk powders are packed with extra vitamins and minerals to help improve people’s wellbeing.

In Ethiopia, Anchor Fortified Milk Drink was developed by Fonterra and the Nutrition Society of Ethiopia to give children important nutrients that may be missing from their diet.

It is already making a difference and today Anchor is number one dairy brand in Ethiopia.

From scoop to sachet - our dairy is sold in many ways.

In countries such as Nigeria and Ethiopia, long-lasting powdered milk is an important source of protein.

Many people don’t have refrigeration, transport or the income to afford fresh milk. 

At open-air ‘scoop markets’, shoppers have traditionally bought scoops of milk powder from large bags to take home to their families.

People now tend to buy milk powder in single-serve sachets, which they tear open and eat dry, or mix with water for a glass of milk.

It’s an affordable way for people with very low incomes to get a daily dose of dairy.

Sachets are a popular and affordable after-school snack – kids stop at a ‘mom and pop’ store on their way home and buy a sachet, licking the milk powder straight from the pack.

But getting our dairy to some areas can be a challenge.

Transporting dairy across Africa can be challenging and never more so than when delivering milk powder to tiny villages in the remotest parts of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

To reach these isolated villages, our dairy undertakes a mighty journey. As Fonterra milk, it first travels from the farm gate to the factory where it is transformed into NZMP milk powder*. Packed in 25kg bags, the milk powder then crosses the oceans by ship to an African port, where it is unloaded and repacked into sachets.

It next embarks on a weeks-long journey across the vast African continent to the Congo, where it is loaded onto barges and punted or motored up the Congo River, the country’s main transportation channel.

Taking around six weeks to make its way up the huge river, the milk powder finally lands in the hands of Congolese villagers, eager for the goodness of New Zealand dairy. From the cow to the Congo – it’s quite a journey!


*NZMP is Fonterra’s dairy ingredients brand.


Our story in Africa.

Devouring dairy in different ways.

Many Africans will not usually drink fresh milk but like to have dairy in other ways, such as with cereal or in cooking. They particularly enjoy yoghurt as a refreshing and nutritious snack.

In a ‘togo’, a traditional yoghurt shop, milk, couscous, sugar and ice are mixed together for hungry consumers. Yoghurt is a favourite lunchtime option.

Fonterra’s new NZMP Whole Milk Powder for Yoghurt has been specially designed for making yoghurt in street markets or at home.

Milk is big business in Africa.

Milk consumption in Africa is among the lowest in the world but it is on the rise. Large-scale dairy production is not widespread so many dairy products are imported - around NZ $700 million worth annually.

In fact Africa is New Zealand’s fastest growing dairy export market.

And this growth is expected to continue. With more than 300 million Africans likely to move to urban centres over the next 20 years for the promise of a better life, the need for affordable, nutritious food sources, such as dairy products, should only rise. 

Fonterra’s growing African footprint.

Africa offers huge opportunity as demand for dairy grows across the continent. Our dairy is sold in 36 out of 55 African countries and NZMP, Fonterra’s dairy ingredients business, is responsible for nearly 70% of New Zealand trade with Africa.

As well as continuing to provide high-quality affordable milk powders to help people have healthier lives, we are developing products to suit a growing middle class with more sophisticated tastes and a desire for more dairy in their diet – particularly New Zealand dairy, which has become synonymous with good, safe and nutritious food.

New Zealand dairy sits high in the popularity stakes.

African consumers rate Fonterra’s NZMP milk powder very highly.

Fonterra sells NZMP milk powder to business customers who repack it under their own brand names for consumers but milk powder sellers will often display NZMP bags to encourage business.

NZMP partners with Hoogwegt International, a global dairy ingredient provider with an extensive African sales network, to help grow NZMP milk powder sales in Africa.

Hoogwegt has already been key in developing new dairy markets for NZMP in 21 African countries.

Fonterra would like to thank Ferdinand Reus, Hoogwegt International, for the use of his video.

2017 Fonterra Co-operative Group