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State eyes top slot in milk production

Patna, June 23: Bihar aspires to be the numero uno in milk production in the coming few years.

“The state as of now holds ninth rank among the milk-producing states and aims to be among the top three by year-end,” animal and fish resources minister Baidyanath Sahni said at a seminar on Monday.

At present, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh are the top three milk-producing states.

Bihar State Milk Co-operative Federation Ltd (Comfed) and Indian Dairy Association, Bihar Chapter, had jointly organised the seminar on “Bihar: A future milk source of India”. The occasion also marked the 31st foundation year of Comfed.

Sahni in his address said: “Bihar has contributed immensely in establishing India among the top milk-producing countries in the world. The 1,700 committees of Comfed that produce 20 lakh litres of milk everyday have made this possible. As agriculture provides income twice a year to the farmers, milk production ensures daily income to them. The government is committed to provide all-round support to Comfed.”

Sahni added that the National Cooperative Development Corporation (NCDC) has provided Rs 121 crore for the Tetra plant at Biharsharif.

The plant produces Tetra pack milk, which does not need refrigeration and can be preserved for six months. The Biharsharif dairy plant, which has 4 lakh litre milk processing and 6,600 litre/hour tetra packaging capacity, is of international standard and the need for milk powder in the state as well as in several other eastern and northeastern states will be fulfilled from here.

Department secretary Harjot Kaur laid stress on improving cattle breeds, without which, she said Bihar cannot become the top milk producer of the country.

“We have a large number of livestock here but in spite of that, milk productivity is less compared to others. Bihar is not yet considered to be a milk surplus state and we have to work in direction towards making it a milk surplus state,” she said.