Photo report: Rapid growth in India's dairy farming sector
Dairy production in India will experience a brisk growth in the coming years. The increase in production arises from traditional small family farms. In addition, new companies are emerging. Mechanisation and automation are at a low ebb in both types of farm. How rapidly this will change mainly depends on price and the availability of labour.
In India milk is an product without any religious implications. It is sought-after by both Hindies and Muslims; two important population groups in the country.
As the Indian dairy sector is highly fragmented, so called backward integration by increasing the supply after the takeover of dairy companies, is not a simple matter.
The Indian government has been stimulating the development of dairy farming in India for decades. This policy mostly aims for growth of family companies. Scaling up companies with 3 to 5 cows to 5 to 10 cows is the current trend.
The fact that the Indian government more or less obligates dairy farmers to breed Holstein cattle is a major bottleneck. Breeding with Holstein once can lead to fine results, but pure Holstein cows are unable to cope with the Indian circumstances.
The need for labour per cow at the newly arising larger dairy farms is equal to that of small family farms. There is hardly any mechanisation.
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