More Land should be Diverted for Horticulture and Animal Husbandry

In order to increase farmers’ income as well as ensure nutrition security for the country, yields have to be increased with the use of technology and more land should be diverted for horticulture, animal husbandry and fisheries. It is time India looked at nutrition security rather than food security, Despite being a global power in agriculture production, the country faced malnutrition. It is estimated that the monthly income of an agricultural household was Rs 6,426 in 2012-13. Taking into account the inflation factor, the real income at the end line of 2022-23, would be Rs 14,339.

There is a need to explore ways to reduce the adverse impact of extreme temperatures on milk production. In order to reduce Green House Gases (GHG) emissions in the dairy sector, it required that policies and programmes emphasising appropriate animal breed selection along with the balancing of ration and other such steps to improve the productivity of animals are implemented. NDDB’s manure value chain is using dung as a source of biogas used as cooking fuel and slurry-based organic fertiliser to reduce methane emissions and also to provide additional income to farmers. NDDB has also been promoting the adoption of solar energy at various levels of the dairy value chain to reduce the use of non-renewable sources of energy. A combination of traditional knowledge and scientific techniques can make India’s dairy sector more resilient to the challenges posed by climate change.

Omnivore has invested in eFeed, an animal nutrition and health company manufacturing innovative products for livestock. eFeed has developed nutritional supplements for livestock which can improve overall cattle health while also increasing milk yield. eFeed’s digital nutrition application also provides customised ration balancing, factoring in the location of the cattle and available raw materials for feeding. The application also connects veterinary doctors to cattle farmers for easy access to medical services.

In line with the National Education Policy, agricultural education will be revamped by giving emphasis on skill development, The course curriculum will be restructured in a way that helps open a wide array of opportunities in the agriculture sector. Setting up initiatives like incubation centres would greatly support rural development.

The Meghalaya government is working towards fostering a development-friendly environment through initiatives such as the Meghalaya Milk Mission, Piggery Mission and Meghalaya State Aquaculture Mission 2.0 to harness rural entrepreneurship and improve living conditions. The state government looks to consolidate Meghalaya as self-sufficient in resources and infrastructure and retain its status as a high-value contributor to the nation’s animal husbandry industry. The Meghalaya Milk Mission intends to replicate the country’s White Revolution structure by encouraging new farmers to participate in community-based dairy cooperative societies. Under the initiative, 66 dairy co-operative societies, and 588 beneficiaries with 1,066 cattle have been provided with ₹25 crores in financial support to boost productivity. To improve the economic and nutritional status, the state government launched a ₹209-crore Piggery Mission uplifting the incomes of over 25,000 households. The mission aims to effect a radical shift in domestic pork production. The mission’s primary objective is to establish economically viable, self-sustaining breeding and fattening units throughout the State. Through this mission, 253 co-operatives received close to ₹45 crores in the monetary grant.

Mr RS Sodhi resigned after the GCMMF Board of Directors resolved to terminate his services asking him to hand over the charge to Mr Jayen Mehta, Chief Operating Officer. What surprised the dairy sector and other stakeholders was there was no mention by the Board of the reason for his ouster nor a word of acknowledgement of his contribution to building the brand AMUL.