Opportunities and the Way Forward Dairy Vision 2025
Addressing the “Dairy Vision 2025”, organized by Confederation of Indian Industry with the support of Ministry of Agriculture here today, Shri Radha Mohan Singh, Hon’ble Minister of Agriculture, Government of India, said that, “collective efforts by the Government, Co-operatives and private sector is needed for sustainable dairy development”. He further stated, “animal husbandry and dairying is one of the most important sub sectors of agriculture having a high growth potential. It provides an attractive opportunity to sustain the livelihood security of millions of small and marginal farmers and landless farm labourers in the country”. He also mentioned that considering 83% of our cattle population is of indigenous breed, if productivity of these segments of the cattle is improved we will go far ahead in meeting the dairy demand of our country. Schemes like ‘Rashtriya Gokul mission’ will go a long way in helping to conserve and improve the welfare of the indigenous breed of the country. He further informed the august gathering about the opening of the kamdhenu breeding centres in North and south India.
Mr T Nandakumar, Chairman, National Dairy Development Board said that dairy would remain an important sector for government intervention for rural poverty alleviation. He said, “looking at the dairy scenario 2025, I would like to recognize three challenges of climate, technology and markets”. He said that, in a manner in which the initiative for ‘Bringing Green Revolution to the Eastern India’ was started, there is a need for serious consideration to start the initiative ‘Bringing While Revolution to Eastern India’. This would enable in tapping the water potential of region, which is conducive for fodder production. This apart from increasing milk production and productivity it would help to alleviate poverty in the region considering the region is characterized by large number of households having small and marginal and small land holdings.
Mr Anup Kumar Thakur, Secretary, Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries, Ministry of Agriculture assured that dairy development is a top priority of the Ministry. He mentioned that focus should be given to strengthen the extension machinery of the country. Government is well aware of the developing challenges in the Dairy sector and is trying to develop a roadmap to overcome these challenges. He also mentioned “platforms like one provided by CII today are in itself a step towards finding solutions to the problems faced in the dairy sector and attaining sustainable development of the dairy sector”.
Mr Salil Singhal, Co-Chairman, CII National Council on Agriculture & Chairman & MD, PI Industries drew the attention to the fact that though India’s dairy sector has performed extremely well in meeting national requirements, the demand for milk is now increasing at a much faster rate than production, a trend that can be attributed to increasing purchasing power, expanding markets, and rising population. The only answer to ensuring that the rapidly growing demand is met from domestic production is increasing productivity. He urged that instead of considering dairy as backyard farming it should be considered as an agro industry. Also the right technology needs to reach small farmers to enable their true empowerment.
“In 11th five-year plan the average annual growth rate of the milk production was 4.51% whereas the consumption is estimated to grow between 6 to 8%. Therefore the gap in production and consumption is widening and India that consumes 100 per cent of its production of milk and milk products may need to import milk if production does not keep pace”, he said.
Mr Siva Nagarajan, Co Chairman, CII National Committee on Dairy and Managing Director, Mother Dairy Fruits & Vegetables Ltd remarked that dairying is a major source of livelihood for more than 70 million rural households and the dairy value chain is unique as there is only one input raw material and the entire chain is geared to preserve, value add and distribute. Thus continuous efforts are needed to improve the productivity as well as the quality of milk i.e. the entire system, from producer - procurement - processing - marketing – consumer, needs to be revamped.
“If India has to derive benefits from its intrinsic advantage and emerge as an exporting country, it is imperative that we develop proper infrastructure, which is capable of meeting international quality requirements”, he said.
Complementing the Ministry in its efforts towards dairy development Mr Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, CII said “The efforts of the Ministry towards dairy development need a special mention. The schemes like “Rashtriya Gokul mission” focussed towards raising milk productivity while protecting and developing indigenous breeds is a great beginning. Also the budgetary allocations to the sector show the government’s commitment towards developing dairy sector”.
The Dairy system in India is considered to be low input low output system and suffers from the lowest productivity per animal. Large portion of production is self-consumed and the balance is made available for processing by organized and unorganized sector. At the same time, Dairy sector in India is undergoing several changes with intervention of government for enhancing productivity, rural infrastructure etc. and other external forces such as mergers and acquisitions. Another prominent trend is organic dairy providing premium products by tapping into urban quality and health conscious customers. The value chain is also gearing up for proliferation of various value-added products with increased processing by organized sector.
Given this background, “Dairy vision 2025” was planned to take stock of the current situation across the dairy value chain and evolve strategies for increasing productivity and profitability of the farmers; identify potential opportunities for Public Private Partnership; identify and resolve key policy constraints and provide a platform to showcase innovations and success stories. Based on the discussion at the conference an actionable roadmap is being prepared which will be presented to the ministry for necessary action.
Some other eminent speakers at the conference were Ms R S Sibal, Joint Secretary, Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries, Mr S R Bhoosreddy, Joint Secretary Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying & Fisheries, Mr R S Rana, Joint Secretary Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying & Fisheries, Dr A K Srivastava, Director, National Dairy Research Institute, Dr Harsev Singh, Chief Executive Officer, Reliance Dairy, Mr Kuldeep Saluja, Managing Director, Sterling Agro and Mr Neeraj Kumar, Managing Director, DeLaval Pvt Ltd. The conference was very well received by all the stakeholders and saw participation from various Central & State Government officials and around 250 delegates.