Meghalaya bets on community ranches, desi breeds to boost dairy production

Meghalaya, which is dependent on other States for its milk requirements, wants to become self-sufficient in milk production by 2022.

The State, which has launched a milk mission, is planning to develop community ranches at the village level and to induct indigenous cattle breeds such as Sahiwal, Gir, Rathi, Red Sindhi and Thaparkar to achieve its goal.

Describing the State’s initiatives over the phone and via email, KN Kumar, Agriculture Production Commissioner and Additional Chief Secretary of Meghalaya, told BusinessLine that the per capita availability of milk in the State is 83 gm a day, much below the national figure of 355 gm.

As per the Livestock Census of 2012, Meghalaya has about a million cattle. Of this, only around 30,000 are milch cows (cross-bred), and they are mostly reared within dairy farming co-operatives. These cows contribute to almost 60 per cent of the total milk production in the State, he said.

Recently, announcing the ?215-crore Meghalaya Milk Mission 2018-22, Union Minister for Agriculture Radha Mohan Singh had stated that of the 6,449 villages in the State, only 97 had milk co-operatives.

Community ranches

Kumar said community ranches are viable in Meghalaya because of the availability of vast open spaces in the districts.....Read more


Source web page: Business Line

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