IFCN workshop looks at Indian dairy challenges

By Jim Cornall contact

- Last updated on GMT

The fifth IFCN regional workshop in Anand, India, looked at challenges and opportunities for the dairy industry in the country.
The fifth IFCN regional workshop in Anand, India, looked at challenges and opportunities for the dairy industry in the country.

Related tags: Milk

The fifth IFCN Regional Workshop was held recently in Anand, India, with 50 experts from various backgrounds in the dairy industry contributing.

The discussions included the global dairy crisis and ideas for future dairy development in India.

Considering how dairy development can be successful, R.S. Sodhi, managing director of Amul, said that access to market via a well-functioning and stable dairy value chain is required.

“If you want to develop dairy, provide market access through stable and sustainable market price to farmers,”​ Sodhi said.

The event heard that development also needs a value-creating dairy farming model that relates to the milk price that consumers are able to pay.

Torsten Hemme, managing director of IFCN, said, “Once you have a dairy farming model where the costs are lower than the milk prices, rapid milk production growth is a natural consequence.”

Regional strategies

Attendees discussed different strategies for more developed and lesser developed regions like in the eastern part of India.

In eastern states like Orissa, milk production growth can be generated by focusing on the value chain, like in the project Operation Flood – a scheme launched in 1970 by India's National Dairy Development Board.

With low salaries, the traditional small-scale dairy model, of approximately two cows and crop residuals used as the feed base, is creating prosperity for farmers.

In more developed dairy regions, like in Gujarat, the workshop concluded that successful dairy growth should focus more on improving dairy farmers’ skills. 

IFCN chairman Anders Fagerberg, said, “Let’s move in dairy development from a top-down to a more bottom-up approach. Via this, we can better insure that dairy farming is attractive for the next generation, the younger people.” 

Related topics: Markets, Emerging Markets, Fresh Milk

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