Govt. strengthening dairy infra to produce quality milk through schemes

THE GOVERNMENT is making efforts to strengthen infrastructure for production of quality milk, procurement, processing and marketing of milk and milk products through various dairy development schemes, namely the National Programme for Dairy Development (NPDD), the National Dairy Plan Phase-I and the Dairy Entrepreneurship Development Scheme (DEDS).

This was stated by Shri Radha Mohan Singh, Hon’ble Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, during his address, titled “Milk Processing Infrastructure in Dairy Cooperative Sector”, at the ministry’s Inter-session Meeting of Consultative Committee, in New Delhi, recently. Further, the Dairy Processing and Infrastructure Development Fund (DIDF) has been set up with a corpus of ₹ 8,004 crore for the setting up of chilling infrastructure and installation of electronic milk adulteration testing equipment at village level and creation/modernisation/ expansion of processing infrastructure and manufacturing facilities for value-added products.

He added that the government is committed to doubling farmers’ incomes by 2022 by providing greater access to rural milk producers by strengthening dairy infrastructure in order to help generate year-round income and gainful employment.

The minister said that 22 sub-projects were approved in January 2019, at a total estimated project cost of ₹3,147.22 crore, in five states, namely Punjab, Haryana,Gujarat, Karnataka and Maharashtra. He added that new schemes with soft loans from World Bank and Japan International Corporation Agency (JICA) were being finalised to extend the benefits to a wider number of farmers.

The government was also formulating plans for the creation of dairy infrastructure, besides implementing the ongoing schemes for dairy development. The National Action Plan (NAP) for Dairy Development envisages increasing milk production to 254.5 million tonne by 2021-22 requiring an annual growth rate of 8.56 per cent, which would lead to increase in per capita availability of milk to 515g per day. It has been targeted to increase the organized milk handling from present 21 per cent to 41 per cent by March 2022, while increasing the cooperative share from the present 10 per cent to 20 per cent.