Authors: Askale Gebrmichael
The study was conducted in Telo district of Keffa zone, SNNP Regional State with the aim of assessing milk production and milk use pattern. Cross-sectional study design was used to collect data from randomly sampled 156 households using survey questioner, farm visit and focus group discussion. Female headed farms were more frequent in urban. The average family size per household was 7 persons. 58.3% of HH were illiterate, mean cattle number was 7, higher (P<0.05) cattle number was found in rural than in urban. Cows are the only animals used for milk production. Milk from small ruminants was not consumed due to cultural taboo. Local indigenous cow contributes 99% of total milk production in the study area. The estimated average daily milk yield of local and cross breed cows was 1.4 and 7.28 L with an estimated lactation length of 8.47 and 9.92 months, respectively. In both urban and rural mixed crop-livestock production system frequency of milking was twice per day (morning and evening). There was no practice of milking in cases of stillbirth or death of calves. Calves were allowed to suckle prior to milking. All milk producers in the study area wash their hand before milking. Some 15% of the urban smallholders even wash udder and teat before milking. The milking utensils, commonly used in both production systems, were plastic materials. Nearly half (45%) of the respondents indicated that they wash milking utensil both before and after milking. The majority (93.7%) of rural (mixed crop-livestock production system) farm households process milk to butter. Only few (6.3%) households do not convert milk to butter but consume it as fermented milk “ergo”. There was no practice of selling fresh milk in the rural area. Overall percentage of raw milk sold in the study area was 19.2%, with price of 15 to 20 ETB/L, indicating high demand and low supply of milk in the area. Key words: Cattle, milk, production, processing, Telo.