Nagpur: The Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari has called upon Mother Dairy, coming under National Dairy Development Board (NDDB), to increase milk purchase from farmers of Vidarbha and Marathwada. Gadkari also exhorted Mother Dairy to increase milk collection centres in the region, adding the development of dairy could not be achieved as expected in the past three years.
Gadkari was addressing a review meeting of Mother Dairy and Dairy Development Department. The meeting was attended also by State Dairy Development and Animal Husbandry Minister Sunil Kedar, NDDB Chairman Minesh Shaha, Mother Dairy’s Managing Director Manish Bandlish, Animal Husbandry Commissioner Sachindra Pratapsingh, Project Director Ravindra Thakre and other officials.
The meeting reviewed the works done by Mother Dairy as per the agreement. Gadkari said, “There is demand for milk but due to inadequate number of milk collection centres, Mother Dairy milk is not being made available to the people. The quantity of milk purchased from farmers in Kolhapur and Solapur districts alone, the same quanity of milk is purchased in entire Vidarbha. In the past three years, 15-20 lakh litres of milk was expected to be purchased. From 2016-17 to 2020-21, over 15,000 farmers from 1996 villages got connected with Mother Dairy. Till now, Rs 147 crore have been distributed to these farmers on account milk purchase. Similarly, 9203 farmers from 947 Marathwada villages got connected with milk business. Considering this fact, the expansion of milk collection centres and milk purchase from farmers is very slow,” Gadkari lamented.
“Planning needs to be done so that daily 8-10 litres of milk is purchased. It must be ensured increased milk purchase and more collection centres in each region. Farmers must get attracted to sell milk to Mother Dairy. At the same time, there should be better coordination between marketing and purchasing departments. All the small complaints faced by farmers in purchase of milk must be resolved on priority. The products of Mother Dairy are good but marketing is not on expected lines,” Gadkari asserted.
Both Gadkari and Kedar stressed that concerted efforts in increasing the per day milk procurement in order to bring the white revolution in districts of Vidarbha and Marathwada.