The deficiency of 23.4% of dry fodder in India is a matter of great concern

According to the Union Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying. Government of India, ICAR — Indian Grassland and Fodder Research Institute (IGFRI), Jhansi, has estimated that there is a deficit of 11.24 per cent, 23.4 per cent, and 28.9 per cent in green fodder, dry fodder and concentrates, respectively, in the country. The shortage is due to the changing land use patterns, urbanisation, declining productivity of pastures, diversion of land towards commercial crops, and non-availability of quality fodder seed among others. Although there were no fears of any crisis, a hike in price was reported for fodder, which may reflect the general trend in inflation. The government is implementing the National Livestock Mission with a sub-mission on feed and fodder development in the country. Under this, financial assistance is provided for seed production of high-yielding fodder varieties, promoting fodder crops as a cash crop and thereby diversifying more area under the fodder crops. The fodder resource plans prepared for 20 States by the Jhansi-based IGFRI under the aegis of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) have also been shared with the States for implementation.

Mooofarm, an ag-tech company and dairy start-up, has raised $13 million in funding in Series A led by Aavishkaar Capital. The company will use the fresh investment to scale up its operations in Rajasthan, Punjab and Haryana, and venture into Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra. Mooofarm targets to grow its ‘MoooSathi’ (village-level entrepreneur) base to 3,000 and increase its revenue to ₹300 crores by FY24. Their ability to combine a dairy farmer-centric approach coupled with technology-driven processes and solid infrastructure helps Mooofarm offer an integrated, efficient and scalable dairy management solution that connects all stakeholders along the value chain, making the platform indispensable to improve efficiency, yield and profits. Mooofarm offers a Dairy as a Service (DaaS)’ full-stack platform where farmers can buy the best breed of cattle, access telehealth and balanced nutrition services to increase milk yield and get loans to buy dairy inputs.

The current acting chairman of the National Dairy Development Board (NDDB), Meenesh C Shah, whose term ends on November 30, has been promoted to Managing Director from executive director by the Board of Directors.

The Karnataka Milk Federation (KMF), the second largest dairy co-operative in the country, has announced a Rs 2 per litre increase in prices for all variants of packaged milk and curd sold under the brand name Nandini. The dairy farmers in the state are faced with challenges such as rising feed and fodder costs and the spread of lumpy skin disease, which is seen impacting milk production in the state. Daily milk procurement, which had touched 94.2 lakh litres during June 2022, has declined to 78.8 lakh litres. Farmer members of KMF get about 79 per cent of the consumer rupee. There are about 26 lakh farmers members of various milk unions in the state, of which on average 10 lakh farmers sell their milk to KMF.

West Bengal has witnessed good growth in meat production and chicken, goat and pig distribution to marginal farmers. Annual meat production increased by 89 per cent and annual milk production increased by 45 per cent during the period from 2010 to 2021.  The State government has been focusing on livestock and animal resources as one of the priority industries with various schemes in place. The government is looking at upscaling of artificial insemination, IVF for cattle and goats (especially Bengal Black Goat) and sex-sorted semen technology audit where all districts would be covered. The engagement of the private sector is essential for the fructification of such schemes. To facilitate the collection and marketing of milk, the State has taken an initiative through the Banglar Dairy by integrating the entire dairy supply chain — extending from the farmer to the market. Banglar Dairy is marketing around 1.40 lakh litres of milk per day and other milk products through 520 retail outlets. Close to ₹88 crores is being invested to upgrade dairy plants of Banglar Dairy.