Friday, May 31, 2019

Daily Glass of Milk You Drink: The Untold Story

Daily Glass of Milk You Drink: The Untold Story

Executive Summary

Milk is mother natures’ perfect food for us, the wholesome diet – but only if you're drinking high quality product. 
·     When consuming your daily glass of milk have you ever experienced a taste characteristic as tart/tangy or produced by acids?
·     When consuming your daily glass of milk have you ever experienced that after compulsorily boiling, it turns thick/ turbid?
·     When consuming your daily glass of milk have you ever experienced bloating or indigestion?

If "YES" then you might be drinking milk coming from Dairy Cooperatives.
The conventional three-tier cooperatives structure consists of a Dairy Cooperatives Society at the village level which is affiliated to a milk unions at the district level that in turn is further federated into a milk federation at the state level. The business model has no answer for consumers regarding milk source i.e., Cow/Buffalo/Pooled milk? There is lack of control over cattle health, housing, breed, environment, milking procedures and sanitation practices adopted by farmers who are at the bottom of pyramid and that is the prime factor affecting sustainability. The control comes only from milk Procurement to Product (P-2-P) and not from Clean Milk Production to Product (CMP-2-P). Don't you sense it’s a clear cut bitter "TRUTH"?

If "YES" then you must shift to drinking milk coming from Dairy Corporates.
The Dairy Corporates have control over all aspects starting from "Land -2- Table" and have more potential to deliver highest quality of dairy products. This is done through backward integration of business model, i.e. setting up own dairy farms where highest quality of dairy products can be produced confronting to international standards, producing best quality fodder for cattle on own lands in a organic manner, as after all "We drink what the cattle eats", maintaining thorough cattle-wise records of entire herd i.e., health, nutrition, breeding, milking and milk quality data to ensure "Tracebility". The model incorporates a highly bio-secure, no human touch milking process. Cleanliness is given the foremost priority to ensure hygienic living and infection-free cattle. 
It's high time to improve your living standards and to improve is to change!

Dairy Cooperatives Model
Milk quality is dependent on three key areas viz. milking practices, the cattle and their environment, and the milking equipments. A common hurdle with many cooperatives model is failure to look at all three areas together and all causes of the milk quality problems are hard to identify. This snag in cooperatives model has resulted out India as a minor player in the world market inspite of having largest milk production i.e., 17% of world’s total dairy production. India is ranked at 18th position in the world exports with a 1.6% share in total world exports. It is envisaged that till 2030 dairy products demand will rise at a rate of 9%-12% and industry demand at a rate of 4-5%. Surely, 100% self-sufficiency will be a challenge for India as local demand will be high i.e.160 to 170 million tonnes of milk that would be required by 2030. Encouraging more Dairy Corporates can help to curb this menace.
Dairy Corporates Model
Producing a superior quality milk product begins at the dairy farm level. Milk quality cannot be improved after it leaves the farm. Dilution or processing will not make good milk out of bad. Prevention is the only way to assure milk of good quality and flavor. Dairy Corporates Model incorporates strategies starting from farm level to Clean Milk Production to best quality product development so as to attain sustainability. Good management and good governance forms the pillars of such a model. The ideal Dairy Corporates model is as depicted below:

Emergence of more dairy corporates are foraying into forward integration by launching farm branded milk and milk products, launching innovative value added products conforming to international standards in Indian and global markets, which in turn will make Indian dairy industry more competitive therein at global context. In order to achieve this, let us define Indian dairy industry growth affecting factors empirically as:

IDG = F1 x F2 x F3 x F4 x F5 x F6
(Where, IDG = Potential of Indian Dairy Growth, Factors: F1 = Milch cattle population, F2 = Cattle's Average yield, F3 = Dairy farmer's intent to consider dairying as a full time business, F4 = Availability of lands for feed, F5 = Available finance for milk production/infrastructure/cattle health, feed and nutrition, breeding/chilling/quality/logistics, F6 = Market opportunity)

Now let us examine all these factors one by one and look at reimagining our approach by adoption of Dairy Corporates model to attain sustainable growth in Indian dairying:
·     F1 = In India, cattle are mostly underfed and mismanaged by small and marginal farmers. Reimaging a Dairy Corporates model where all these farmers are enrolled into workable groups, clusters then it would be really easy for capacity building on health, breeding and feeding systems for cattle in a cost effective manner.
·     F2 = Indian milch cattle population is highly scattered, reimaging a Dairy Corporates model where it is easy to implement a cluster breeding program for pockets of cattle. Also, it is convenient to announce schemes for large commercial dairy farms of corporates.
·     F3 = Dairying without farmer's commitment is not sustainable. It is easy under Dairy Corporates model to develop formalised groups with progressive thoughts and to device and implement a strategy to grow and sustain by active engagement of the farmers and their family. It is only through such community development, Indian dairying can be seen as a professionally white collar activity to lure next generation.
·     F4 = Rapid unplanned urbanization has led to scarcity of agricultural lands. Almost two third of milk production cost accounts to the feed alone. In such scenario, contract, community or corporate farming is the only solution to sustain the growth of Indian dairy.
·     F5 = In many instances, under cooperatives model the farmer oriented investments are not reaching the last mile or they are not being utilised for the purpose they were meant to create an impact. Thus, community oriented schemes with special incentives to investment done by community or corporates for large scale dairy farming, processing, cattle feed, and animal health missions, feed programs or breed development could only be the solution. It's high time to shift investment mode from PPP (Public-Private-Partnerships) to PCP (Private-Community- Partnership) and/or PPCP (Public-Private-Community-Partnership) model.
·     F6 = Due to Indian consumer's changing lifestyle and socio-economic conditions there is a rise in the inspirational levels and packed dairy products of high quality with health and nutrition increasing in demand. Such situation offers a huge potential for setting up community driven dairy farms that can be developed under PCP (Private-Community-Partnerships) rather than PPP (Public-Private-Partnerships).

A sample of draft design as shown below symbolises the results chain that can emerge out of Dairy Corporates model; adoption on a large scale at national level that links the outcome with the final impact which will promote growth in Indian dairy industry. A national strategy for sustainable dairy development in the country can be devised in this manner and the trend can be shifted from “Share Milkers” to “Share Holders”. However, the key to this massive change will depend on the willingness of farmers to adopt a more sophisticated approach for running their businesses and the adoption of the Dairy Corporates business model. 


Milk quality is a national issue. Consumers need a better quality product so it is the dairy producers and dairy industry's obligation to meet that request. India has witnessed lot of floods but still one flood is the need of the day to change entire landscape throughout the length and breadth of the country, starting from the villagers through the districts to the large metropolitan cities. Dairy Corporates model can play a strategic role to help dairy farmers control their created resources and also direct their own development. The present blog has brought out the model as a mantra for developing a national level strategy to meet the humongous demand of milk and milk products through sustainable dairying in India through community mobilization.

"Every time you drink a glass of milk take the awe of understanding over the awe of ignorance”.

By – Dr. Soham Trivedi
Rai University, Ahmedabad

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