SRINAGAR: Principal Secretary Animal, Sheep Husbandry, Dr Asgar Hassan Samoon on Friday convened the second meeting in three days regarding payment of remunerative prices to dairy farmers by buyers in Cooperative and Private sector.

The meeting was attended by Director AH Kashmir Dr M Y Chaproo, representatives of Milk processing companies, officers of CAPD/SMC. Besides, Director Animal Husbandry Jammu Dr Victor Koul, Commissioner JMC, DGM NABARD Chief Animal Husbandry Officers of all districts of J&K participated via video conference.

Dr Samoon observed that while the State produces around 70 Lac litres of milk per day, less than 5 % of total milk produced is routed and marketed through organised sector (milk processing companies) and rest of the milk is marketed through unorganized sector which compromises its quality as there are is little, if any, regulation enforcement in this sector. Dairy farmers of different districts complained that milk processing companies are paying procurement price of Rs 23 per litre of milk (3.5% fat and 7% SNF) as a result, the farmers are not able to compensate feeding/ management cost of their dairy animals let alone make profits.

The meeting decided that milk processing companies/cooperative sector/milk vendors shall pay Rs. 30 to 32 per litre of milk (3.5% fat & 7% SNF) to dairy farmers and CAPD shall accordingly fix the rates of processed milk and loose milk. Animal Husbandry Departments J/K was advised to establish/revive at least 4 dairy cooperatives in each district of the State. They were also advised to start franchise-based Milk marketing outlets with the installation of milk vending machines with the aim to extend marketing support to dairy farmers and act as a standard for quality control of milk. DGM NABARD explained different components of DEDS scheme related to milk processing/ chilling and start of dairy parlours which can be adopted by unemployed youth.