Odisha’s Milk Production Soars, but Per Capita Availability Falls Short: NABARD Report
Milk production in Odisha has witnessed remarkable growth over the past two decades, increasing almost threefold from 8.75 lakh tonnes in 2000 to around 24 lakh tonnes presently. However, despite this surge in production, the per capita availability of milk in the state still lags behind the national average and the recommended nutritional requirement suggested by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).
According to a recent report released by the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), the per capita milk availability in Odisha stands at 144 gm per day, significantly lower than the national average of 444 gm per day and the ICMR recommendation of 300 gm per day. Furthermore, the average milk yield per in-milk animal in the state falls below the national average for various categories of cattle and buffalo.
The report highlights several critical issues plaguing the dairy sector in Odisha. These include low production capacity of existing cattle stock, inadequate availability of fodder, insufficient veterinary services, delays in artificial insemination service delivery, a shortage of milk routes, and a high number of dormant or less functional milk cooperative societies.
NABARD also emphasizes the lack of sufficient support from the state government to Odisha State Cooperative Milk Producers’ Federation Ltd. (OMFED) in boosting milk production, incentivizing farmers for milk pouring, and ensuring OMFED’s competitiveness against other private players in the dairy value chain.
The livestock sector is the second-largest sub-sector in Odisha, contributing nearly 15 percent to the total gross value added (GVA) of agriculture and allied activities. Milk alone accounts for eight percent of the total agricultural output. Cattle in the state represent 5.12 percent of the country’s total cattle population.
NABARD suggests various critical interventions to address these challenges, including the establishment of veterinary dispensaries, artificial insemination and breeding centers, and upgrading fodder farms. The report also recommends the induction of crossbred milch cattle, the revival of milk cooperative societies, strengthening of milk routes, and incentives to expedite milk procurement.
Efforts to enhance the dairy sector in Odisha will not only contribute to better nutrition but will also generate employment opportunities and boost the state’s economy. It is imperative for the authorities to address the identified issues and prioritize the implementation of NABARD’s recommendations to ensure the sector’s rapid development.
This news article is an overview of the NABARD report highlighting the significant increase in milk production in Odisha but the inadequate per capita availability compared to the national average. It sheds light on the critical issues faced by the dairy sector and emphasizes the need for interventions and government support to overcome these challenges. The article aims to create awareness about the importance of addressing these issues and promoting the growth of the dairy sector in the state.