EghtesadOnline: Iran exported over 756,000 tons of milk during the nine months to December 21, 2017, Deputy Agriculture Minister Hassan Rokni told IRNA.
Exports are expected to hit one million tons by the end of the current fiscal that ends in March.
“Ten years ago Iran was a major importer of milk. Now Iran produces 10 million tons of milk annually. This not only meets domestic demand, but we’re thinking of having a bigger share in international markets,” Rokni said.
On the subject of the low share of milk in the food basket of Iranian households, he said the government has plans to increase milk consumption in schools, Financial Tribune reported.
According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Iran is among the medium-consumption countries with a dairy consumption rate of 30 to 150 kg per capita per year.
Other countries in this category are India, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Mongolia, New Zealand, North and Southern Africa, most of the Middle East, and most of Latin America and the Caribbean.
Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Costa Rica, Europe, Kyrgyzstan, North America and Pakistan are among high-consumption countries devouring more than 150 kg per capita per year.
The low-consumption countries and regions consuming under 30 kg per capita per year include Senegal, most of Central Africa and most of East and Southeast Asia.
Iran also exports milk in the form of powder. According to another deputy agriculture minister, Abdolmehdi Bakhshandeh, the country exported 26,000 tons of powdered milk valued at $100 million during the nine months to December 22, 2017 to register 75% and 97% year-on-year jump in value and tonnage respectively.
Last year (March 2016-17) exports of powdered milk stood at $129 million.