Dairy revolution will change farmer incomes
India is the prime producer of milk and is holding the number one position globally for the past two decades. The growth in the dairy sector is a result of the initiatives taken by the Government. By implementing various schemes to increase the productivity of milch animals, farmers’ incomes have gone up,” Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Minister Radha Mohan Singh told the audience while laying the foundation stone for a dairy plant in Motihari. Hoping it would promote development in East Champaran district, he belted out figures. Milk production, which was around 17 to 22 million tonnes in the 1960s, has increased to 165.4 million tonnes in 2016-17. During the year 2016-17 milk production increased by 20.12 per cent as compared to 2013-14. The income of the dairy farmers grew by 23.77 per cent during 2014-17 as compared to 2011-14.
Said he, “India has reached a stage where there are opportunities for the entrepreneurs at international level.” In the last three years, milk production in India grew by 6.3 per cent thus surpassing the annual global growth rate of 2.1 per cent.
Dairy farming has become a source of livelihood and food security at the rural level especially for landless and marginal farmers. About 80 million farmers are connected with dairy business and they rear 80 per cent of the total milch cattle. The Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries has initiated a number of schemes with the objective of doubling the dairy farmers’ income in line with Prime Minister’s mission to double the farmers’ income by the 75th anniversary of India’s independence.
The Minister said that for the first time in the country Rashtriya Gokul Mission was launched in December 2014 for the conservation and promotion of the indigenous breeds. Gokul Grams will act as a centre for the development of the indigenous species and it will also supply animals to the farmers for breeding. Currently, 18 Gokul Grams in 12 different states are being established. Apart from this, the Government is undertaking the establishment of two National Kamdhenu Breeding Centres for the conservation and development of indigenous bovine breeds in Chintaladevi, Nellore and in Itarsi, Hoshangabad. Out of the two, Chintaladevi Centre in Andhra Pradesh is complete. Under this scheme, 41 bovine breeds and 13 buffaloes will be preserved.
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