The Indian dairy industry has lauded the government’s decision to earmark a corpus of `8,000 crore for a Dairy Processing and Infrastructure Development Fund [which is to be set up in the National Bank of Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD)] in the Union Budget 2017-18, calling it a huge step towards dairy development through benefiting farmers. The corpus would be set up over three years. Initially, the fund will start with a corpus of `2,000 crore. The Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF), which manages Amul, also hailed the move. R S Sodhi, the federation’s managing director, said, “There is a huge scope for development in dairy processing. Also, it can help cooperatives to develop quality milk through an advanced system which will enable dairy players to procure high-quality milk from all over the country,” he said. “Another major area that can be addressed is milk processing. The capacity of milk processing overall can be improved,” Sodhi added. “During Operation Flood, a host of dairy processing machinery was set up. This is currently obsolete and old, and needs to be replaced with the new advanced system of dairy processing. Several cooperatives set up then downed their shutters. These need rejuvenation, which can happen if such an inflow is continuous,” he added. Speaking on the development of allied infrastructure, Sodhi said, “If cold chain, which is the need of the hour, is promoted, it can support the development of the cooperatives. Development of the cold chain has to be initiated in tandem with the development of dairy processing.” B B Bhandari, chief marketing officer, Warana Dairy (Shree Warana Sahakari Dudh Utpadan Prakriva Sangh Limited), said, “The move has set the target to develop dairy sector, but we need to see how and in what manner this fund will reach the cooperatives, as they are the ones who require more allocation for development.” “The allocation also has to be further disbursed for setting up cold chains which will enable storage of large quantities of milk at the farm level. The major task is to collect milk from the procuring centres as these centres at the farms lack appropriate facilities for ensuring the right temperature needed for the storage,” he added. Commenting on the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) sector, Bhandari said, “The allocation of the Mudra loan could benefit the MSME sector, as the budget allocation is doubled to `2.44 crore. This move will allow many petty businesses to grow with high-tech machinery for ensuring quality.” “If you consider the export market, MSMEs constitute a large share of value-added dairy products like casein and skimmed milk powder. This allocation would definitely involve more MSMEs in the processing,” he added. In his Budget speech, finance minister Arun Jaitley had
said, “Dairy is an important source of additional income for the farmers. The availability of milk processing facilities and other infrastructure will benefit the farmers through value addition.”
(Source: Food & Beverage News, February 8, 2017)
Disclaimer: The information provided within this publication / eBook/ content is for general informational purposes only. While we try to keep the information up-to-date and correct, there are no representations or warranties, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the information, products, services, or related graphics contained in this publication / eBook/ content for any purpose. Any use of this information is at your own risk.