This post was originally published on 12 June 2017 and the content may be outdated.
An enterprising Qatari businessman has found the perfect solution as well as a business opportunity, amid Qatar’s unexpected shortage of fresh milk, due to the ongoing diplomatic crisis.
Moutaz Al Khayyat, chairman of Power International Holding, is planning to fly in 4,000 cows to Qatar in an act of resistance and opportunity to fill the void left by a collapse in the supply of fresh milk.
60 flights to deliver 4000 cows
According to a report on Bloomberg, it will take as many as 60 flights for Qatar Airways to deliver the cows that he bought in Australia and the U.S.
“This is the time to work for Qatar,” he is reported to have said.
Most of the fresh milk and dairy products for Doha’s more than 1 million population came from Saudi Arabia up until a week ago.
That milk is getting scarce after the kingdom, the United Arab Emirates and two allies cut transport links with Qatar.
However Qatar seems to have outgrown the food shortage with Turkish dairy goods being flown in, and Iranian fruit and vegetables arriving via flights and ships. There’s also a campaign to buy home-grown produce.
50 kilometers north of Doha, Al Khayyat already has a farm which produces sheep milk and meat and there were already plans to import the cows by sea. The project was expedited after the crisis.
Fresh milk production will now start by the end of the month rather than September and will eventually cover a third of Qatar’s demand by mid-July, Al Khayyat reportedly said.
Facilities for the Holstein cows are ready, though the company will take a hit on the shipping cost for the animals, which increased more than five times to $8 million, the report added.