The Vellore and Tiruvannamalai Districts Cooperative Milk Producers Union (Vellore Aavin) has embarked on an ambitious plan to upgrade and modernize infrastructure with a view to increasing milk production, procurement and distribution of milk and value added products.
N. Aruljothi Arasan, General Manager, Aavin, told Express that government agencies of National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), National Agricultural Development Project (NADP)and National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) are in total extending approximately Rs 10 crore in this regard. The upgrade and modernization would be completed in a phased manner in the next six months to one year period.
A little over Rs 5 crore will be funded by NABARD to upgrade the chilling and packaging units, adding more numbers of bulk milk-processing units while a little over Rs 2 crore from NADP will help in modernizing the refrigeration units and other equipment. Over Rs 2 crore from NDDB under its ‘Ration Balancing Programme’ will aim to improve the nutritional intake of milch animals. “We have selected 250 societies having a high presence of milch animals to increase milk production in the region,” Arasan pointed out.
“This is basically to meet the growing demand for milk while boosting the milk output from the districts of Vellore and Tiruvannamalai, “ he added.
Vellore Aavin has established around 812 milk societies that produces around 3.3 lakh litres of milk per day as against the previous year’s average of 2.6 lakh litres. This is due to several steps taken by the state government such as free cattle distribution to poor landless labourers which has added around 5,000 milch animals in the last two years. Once the average milk yield from this belt improves, “we will be able to meet the demand without any difficulty,” Arasan further said.
Total milk production in the region amounts to around 12 lakh litres per day which includes the milk production of 25 private milk dairy operators. Aavin procures around 25 percent from the Vellore and Tiruvannamalai districts.
Recently, when Aavin had increased the price of milk and the procurement rate, this came as a big blow to the private operators not only within the district but also from the nearby districts such as Chittoor in Andhra Pradesh as all milk producers leaned toward selling to Aavin.
As the export of milk powder from India saw a steep decline in the recent months due to drop in its global price, private operators reduced the procurement from farmers. Farmers who were thus supplying milk to private operators hitherto suddenly found themselves at a loss as they were not able to sell their produce either to private operators or to Aavin bought milk only from the members in the cooperative society.
Aavin’s plans to upgrade infrastructure is thus expected to benefit both members and non-members of the milk societies as they capacity to procure, store and distribute larger quantities of milk.
■ Vellore Aavin is upgrading infrastructure to increase milk production, procurement and distribution and value added products.
■ To be completed in the next six months to one year.
■ Total milk production in the region amounts to around 12 lakh litres per day. Aavin procures around 25 percent-approximately 3.3 lakh litres per day
■ NABARD), NADP and NDDB are in total extending approximately Rs 10 crore for the project
■ Over Rs 5 crore will be funded by NABARD to upgrade the chilling and packaging units; Over Rs 2 crore from NADP will modernize refrigeration units; Over Rs 2 crore from NDDB will increase nutritional intake of milch animals.