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Along the Milky Way: Marketing Camel Milk in Puntland, Somalia


  • Michele Nori

    () (Weageningen University, Firenze.)


Milk is the most critical resource in pastoral systems; it is the staple food as well as the most precious gift. When it flows it means rains have come and peace is there. Milk production and utilisation is deeply embedded in the pastoral institutional setting, which governs natural resource management, household dynamics and social roles. The recent commercialisation of camel milk and its increasing role as an income generator in some pastoral regions reflects and induces important societal changes. By investigating the nature and the dynamics of camel milk production and commercialisation, this article explores their impacts on society as well as on local livelihoods in the Somali context. It does so in Puntland, the northeastern territories of Somalia, where commercialisation of camel milk is an increasingly key dimension of the strategy to enhance livelihood options among pastoralists.Le lait est la ressource la plus cruciale dans les systèmes pastoraux; il constitue non seulement l’aliment de base mais le don le plus précieux; s’il y a du lait, c’est que les pluies sont tombées, et la paix règne. La production et l’utilisation du lait sont profondément ancrées dans le système institutionnel pastoral, qui gouverne la gestion des ressources naturelles, les dynamiques des ménages et les rôles sociaux. La commercialisation récente du lait de chameau et le fait qu’il procure des revenus croissants dans les régions pastorales reflète et provoque des changements sociétaux importants. En étudiant la nature et les dynamiques de production et de commercialisation de lait de chameau, cet article retrace l’impact de ces récents changements sur la société, ainsi que sur les moyens de subsistance dans le contexte Somalien. L’étude se concentre sur le Puntland dans le nord-est de la Somalie où la commercialisation du lait de chameau devient une dimension de plus en plus importante de la stratégie visant à renforcer les moyens de subsistance des pasteurs.

Suggested Citation

  • Michele Nori, 2010. "Along the Milky Way: Marketing Camel Milk in Puntland, Somalia," The European Journal of Development Research, Palgrave Macmillan;European Association of Development Research and Training Institutes (EADI), vol. 22(5), pages 696-714, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:pal:eurjdr:v:22:y:2010:i:5:p:696-714

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