Dairy industry has hailed the budget provisions for the animal husbandry sector as futuristic, especially the focus on technology, research on genome of indigenous breeds and e-commerce platform for connecting breeders with farmers
Neeraj Kumar, managing director of Swedish MNC DeLaval said, “India lacks in animal records, high quality breed and have been neglecting local breeds. The budget provision of Rs 850 crore is in right direction. The improved breeding will deliver increased productivity and hence improve farmer profitability. E-commerce will help us improve transparency and eliminate middle men, while genomics for local breeds will ensure sustainable dairy farming with local resources.”
The budget has provided fro Rs 850 crore in next few years for spending on the ‘Pashudhan Sanjivani’, an animal wellness programme and provision of Animal Health Cards (‘Nakul Swasthya Patra’); second, an Advanced breeding technology; third, Creation of ‘E-Pashudhan Haat’, an e market portal for connecting breeders and farmers; and fourth, a National Genomic Centre for indigenous breeds.
While Arvind Gautam, managing director of Genus ABS India, the global leader in animal genetics said, “The budget provisions for animal husbandry sector are futuristic. The National Genomic Centre will help unleash potential we have in our indigenous breeds and take it to the farmers to translate into their dairy operations. The focus on advanced breeding is also good as the sexed semen technology, patented by two global companies, is not locally available in India. The proposed e-commerce platform will help connect those who are looking for good breeds with the breeders.”
Indian dairy giant Amul too finds the budget giving boost to ‘Make in Rural India. RS Sodhi, managing director, Amul said, “We need to develop our local breeds like Gir and Murrah. The e-commerce platform is very much necessary as there are many middle men working in the animal trading business, who many not necessarily help you in getting the best breeds.”
However, some dairies think that the research focus should also be on the Holstein Friesians cows, which are not indigenous but being reared by 90% of the farmers. “We also need research on HF cows as they are high yielding,” said Devendra Shah, chairman and managing director, Parag Milk Foods which sells its cheese under the ‘Go Cheese’ brand. – The Economic Times