Kerala to add 40 more panchayats to Dairy Village project for milk self-sufficiency
J. Chinchurani, Minister for Animal Husbandry, Dairy Development, and Milk Cooperatives in Kerala, said that the Dairy Village project will be expanded to 40 more panchayats during the next financial year. This will help Kerala reach its goal of producing enough milk to meet its own needs.
She said this after launching Milma’s H2F (Help to Farmers) project in Kochi. The plan calls for each chosen panchayat to get ₹50 lahks, which will be split between the local government and the State government.
One and a half months ago, the government said that it would spend ₹12.5 crores on the Ksheera Gramam (Dairy Village) project as part of the State’s Commercial Dairy Milk and Milk Shed Development Programme. This announcement comes one and a half months after that.
‘We are doubling the number of panchayats from 20 to 40,’ the Minister said at the event, where four new Milma products were also introduced.
The Minister asked dairy farmers to get full insurance coverage for their cows and calves. He said that the government has been trying to make the State’s dairy industry more efficient by letting the amount of milk each cow makes go up.
‘When a cow in Punjab gives 14.5 litres of milk per day, Kerala comes in second with 10.6 litres. ‘We have to move up,’ she said.
Chinchurani released the H2F logo and also said that APCOS (Anand Pattern Cooperative Societies) will now get paid if their buildings are damaged by natural disasters. She also opened up a programme that gives farmers a small refund if they lose a cow or calf for no reason.
The government will put into action the decisions made at the recent State Dairy Development Department meeting about when to milk cows to make them work better.
‘We are trying to set the time at dawn and dusk instead of the small hours and afternoon, which is what is usually done. This will give them a good break of 12 hours and allow them to work other jobs during the day that can help them make more money, she said.
Milma’s also came out with new products like sugar-free Peda, Chocolate Peda, Jack Fruit Peda, and Guava Ice-cream. Also Read | Why Kerala farmers abandoning rubber in favour of rambutan, dragon fruit?
MT Jayan, the head of the ERCMPU, said that the cooperative union had given the government a list of development projects worth ₹40 crores. ‘Up to 83% of Milma’s income goes to the farmers, and the rest is used for social welfare,’ he said.