Kahramaa power connection reduces operation cost of dairy farm

DOHA: A Qatari woman has emerged as a role model for young girls and housewives who is running a dairy farm successfully which assumed great importance in the country especially after the blockade.

Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation (Kahramaa) has provided electricity connection to the farm which helped reduce the operation cost.

Nawal Hilal Al Mulla, the owner of “Al Reem Dairy” operating in Al Shamal resigned from her position as a coordinator at the Training Center of Doha Bank in 2012 to launch dairy farm business.

“The project Al Reem Dairy is housing 25 cows, 600 sheep 80 goats producing over 55 liters milk in a day,” Nawal Hilal Al Mulla told The Peninsula.

She said that the dairy products include milk, yogurt, cheese and ghee among many others. The farm also produces cakes and ice cream mixed with fresh fruits. Speaking about the finances, Nawal said “I secured a loan from Qatar Development Bank to build an air-conditioned facility to increase the sheep.”

She said that Bedaya Center also supported her by providing stickers and advertisement materials and those related to packaging. The Center guides Qatari youths to launch their business and start their careers.

“The Center provided details to the Farm about different products and held a workshop for the development of the project. It also helped in obtaining commercial registration and market the products through Al Meera outlets,” said Nawal.

Nawal’s husband provided adequate support to run the business. “My husband encouraged me to start the project. He helped bring latest equipment required for dairy products. He is supervising the farm and arranged necessary fodder for animals,” said Nawal.

She said that green fodder is being cultivated at the farm which has enough space for this purpose. And a surface-water well is available inside the farm.

Regarding the demands of dairy products, Nawal said that the demand of her products increased during Holy month of Ramadan.

In addition, she did pretty good business at the exhibitions especially at Darb Al Sai on National Day and Halal Exhibition at Katara.

The dairy farm of Nawal also participated in Made-in-Qatar Exhibition and Manazilna (our homes) exhibition of households and many more.

Manal said that she will participate to Manazilna exhibition which is scheduled to be held from October 12 to 20 at Doha Exhibition and Convention Center.

Manal said that her dairy farm received electricity connection recently which saved cost of generator adding that the generator costs about QR150,000 apart from the diesel and maintenance costs.

Speaking about the challenges, Manal said that gradually problems are getting solved. There was difficult earlier to get the material for packaging the products but now many factories opened in the country providing the materials at reasonable price.

Manal is eyeing to participate in the regional and international exhibitions to market her products.

“Now I can run a commercial shop and hire a shop within Furjan Market project or Souq Al Waqif to cater the residents,” said Manal.

Rents of such shops low compared to the shops in other commercial areas. “My project has some touch of traditional heritage which needs to be expanded by making a lot of products with dairy products like cake and other bakery items and hot beverages.”

Al Reem Dairy is also running an apiary with over 20 bee-hives inside the farm. “Four years ago, a strong wind destroyed the beehives,” said Manal adding that the Ministry of Municipality and Environment represented by the Agriculture Affairs Department provided 10 beehives.

She said that the beehives are increasing gradually.

Source: The Peninsula Qatar