Milk day

World Milk Day and the Camel Milk

The Camel and the Longs Shadows of Climate Change

The calamities of climate change are so devastating for the farming sector, especially animal agriculture. Not only the feed & water is the main challenge but the rise in temperatures, aridity, and diseases are also adversely affecting the production and the quality of the products. In such a mystifying scenario some species of animals are preferred over others because of their adaptation to the emerging challenges and producing quality products, the camel is one of the examples of such genetic resources.

Towering Demand for Camel Milk

The demand for camel milk is increasing because of some very basic facts as;

  • The camel can produce milk in the challenging environmets and needs very little inputs, so its products are attractive for those who think about the environment. Camel Dairying is sustainable in true sense.
  • The camel milk is very healthy, immune booster, and safe for all ages and conditions.
  • The camel milk has longer shelf life and needs very little efforts to be preserved and stored.

Seeing such a demanding market for camel milk, many players are coming into the ring to produce camel milk and deliver it in the market. In the last 2 years, many new camel dairying plans are chalked out in different regions but the main boost was seen in the Arabian Peninsula and the Horn of Africa (mainly Kenya). Also, new camel milk products are introduced in the market in Mongolia, China Kazakhstan, Iran, India, and some Western countries like Australia.

We can say that especially under the COVID-19: demand for camel milk grows from Kazakhstan to Kenya and from Australia to Europe and North America.

A camel milk entrepreneur from Kenya reported that up to 20% rise in demand for camel milk during COVID-19 and lockdown – especially home deliveries – as more consumers shift from cow to camel milk, to help boost immunity. Known for its anti-inflammatory, strong protective proteins, anti-microbial and nutritious value; parents seek camel milk for children.

But the camel milk really needs to be further investigated for its immunity-boosting role as there are many reports and some scientific studies suggesting that the camel milk can be a good and useful immunity booster.

 Camel milk is no doubt free of allergic proteins and intolerant lactose. It is safe to be feed to people with cow milk protein allergy and lactose intolerance. Dr. Tahereh Muhammadabadi is working on the role of camel milk as a functional food and researching the thrilling of camel milk. She claims that the noble molecules present in camel milk perform as natural pharmacies for human beings.

The Production of Camel Milk is Also Increasing

Pre-COVID, the global camel milk products market was valued at USD 10.2 billion in 2019, with an estimated 3 million tons of camel milk officially sold and consumed around the world. But true production levels could be double that, at 5-6 million tons per year; as around 70% of camel milk is consumed by camel owners and never reaches the market.

Take-Home Message

I’m working with camels for the last 15 years and very much convinced that the camel is a true and sustainable dairy animal. The most important message over here is that the camel dairy must be promoted and developed as the camel dairy, not an HS model. The wellbeing and welfare of the camel must be kept in notice while establishing a camel dairy unit. Some camels are producing a very high volume of milk and the others are comparatively very low but we can manage a thick average from both extremes.

General about camel

World Milk Day 2020 – Raise a glass to the more natural milk – camel milk!

GLOBAL COALITION FOR CAMEL MILK (Ad hoc) World Milk Day – Monday 1 June 2020 World Milk Day 2020 – Raise a glass to the more natural milk – camel milk!

This World Milk Day, for the first time, a global coalition of camel milk consumers, experts, and dairy producers from 35 countries will raise a virtual glass for camel milk. This is the first-time camel milk is on the global World Milk Day agenda since the day began 20 years ago. Sales in camel milk are growing, as interests, in this more natural, climate-friendly, and healthy dairy option – both as stand-alone milk and as an active ingredient in camel milk products.

 “Give the camel a chance as the camel is the solution of the complex problems in the emerging climate change calamities’ said Dr. Abdul Raziq, advocating camel4life.

The global camel milk products market size was valued at USD 10.2 billion in 2019.[1] Camel milk is highly sought after for its anti-inflammatory, strong protective proteins, anti-microbial and nutritious value and works well for lactose intolerance

“The global camel market is projected to grow at more than 10% for the next decade, so more camel milk in the future!” said Dr. Bernard Faye, veterinarian, and chair of ISOCARD, the International Society of Camelid Research and Development.

The unique health benefits of camel milk:

Camel milk works across a range of physical and behavioral issues, making it a highly effective alternative.  “Parents of children with autism remain a key and growing market, as studies show the milk is safe and effective and can lead to behavioral and medical improvements,” stated Christina Adams, author of several publications on camel milk and editorial board member of the Journal of Camel Science.

“The fatty acids in camel milk are also better for human hearts as they contain more mono-unsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids than cow milk. Low in allergenic proteins, camel milk is also the best alternative to human milk and for children with severe food allergies or eczema,” said Dr Tahereh Mohammadabadi, Associate Professor, Khuzestan Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources University, Iran.

A growing market for camel milk

The Middle East and Africa dominate with more than 60% of the global camel livestock revenue. Somalia, Ethiopia, Sudan, and Kenya consume the most per capita in the region. Saudi Arabia is the largest market in the world at around 33 litres per year, per capita. North America is expected to grow the fastest as consumers with diabetes switch to camel milk to better control sugar levels.

The cow dairy industry is known to be a well-organized and powerful lobby force. Until now the camel milk private sector has been mostly established in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Saudi Arabia and Mauritania. But with climate change and growing consumer concerns about ethics and farming, camel herders and camel milk producers are expanding worldwide.

For the past 50 years, camels are the second-fastest growing herbivorous livestock in the world, after buffalo, and has grown annually significantly by 4.5 % in the past decade in Africa (FAO)2. The Middle East and the Horn of Africa camels lead the charge, as the second-fastest growing herbivore livestock in the world after buffalo (FAO).

Regions in Africa are switching to camels even where they never were before, e.g. Uganda and Tanzania « There is so much tradition and long-term use across the world, but we need more scientific research on camel in general  and especially on camel milk” Says Mohammed Bengoumi, Tunisia based FAO camel expert. 

Facing climate change on the equator in Kenya and Australia, more commercial dairy farmers are diversifying or switching to camels as they do better in tough, drought-ridden, hot climates and browse on prickly bushes and shrubs that most farm animals avoid.

“The camel milk industry is undervalued but could rival other foreign exchange earners in Kenya. Drought and the fact that 89% of Kenya is classified as arid and semi-arid land means many are shifting from cows to camels, even in southern Kenya,” said Dr James Chomba Njanja, Vice Chair of the Kenya Camel Association.

Every year an estimated 3 million tons of camel milk is officially sold and consumed around the world. But the true production level could be double that, at around 5-6 million tons per year. A fact of note is that 70% of camel milk is consumed by the camel owners and never reaches the market.

The camel saved humans for generations in the desert.  In arid areas and hot weather over 45C, we see cows suffer as they need 8-10 times more water than camels to produce 1 liter of milk,” said Dr. Abdul Raziq Kakar, a UAE based camel dairy specialist from Pakistan and Camels4All blogger.

Camel herding nomads who have traditionally bred camels for centuries are also benefiting from the interest in camel milk. “Supporting decentralized camel farming through innovative models is a great opportunity to reduce poverty and to better food security in some of the poorest parts of the world,” concluded Dr. Ilse Köhler-Rollefson, project coordinator of the League for Pastoral Peoples. 

For all these climate friendly, natural, and immune-boosting reasons, please raise a virtual or real glass of camel milk to celebrate this World Milk Day!

#worldmilkday #enjoydairy #camelmilk

Dr. Abdul Raziq Kakar, camel dairying specialist, advocating camel4life.

Website: Blog: Camel milk blog: E. Mail: Twitter: @DrRaziqKakar

For information, photos, and interviews with camel milk experts worldwide: Samantha Bolton +41 79 239 23 66 – – Twitter: @camel_wild  and  @sambolton007


[2]The global milk market grew at a steady pace of 3.89% per year between 2011 and 2018 (FAO)