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White Revolution In India
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Milk production in India increased from 17 million tons in 1950-51 to 84.6 million tons in 2001-02. Therefore, from being a recipient of massive material support from the World Food Program and European Community in the 1960s, India has rapidly positioned itself as the world's largest producer of milk.Milk production in the country was stagnant during the 1950s and 1960s, and annual production growth was negative in many years. The annual compound growth rate in milk production during the first decade after independence was about 1.64 percent; during the 1960s, this growth rate declined to 1.15 percent. The disappointing performance of the dairy sectorconcerned policy makers, and the Government of India undertook a far-reaching policy initiative.
During the late 1960s, the Government of India initiated major policy changes in the dairy sector to achieve self-sufficiency in milk production. Producing milk in rural areas through producer cooperatives and moving processed milk to urban demand centers became the cornerstone of government dairy development policy. This policy initiative gave a boost to dairy development and initiated the process of establishing the much-needed linkages between rural producers and urban consumers.
The Government of India launched a massive dairy development program popularly known as Operation Flood (OF) from 1971 to 1996. The program was initially started with the help of the World Food Program (WFP) and later continued with dairy commodity assistance from the European Economic Community (EEC) and a soft loan/credit from the World Bank. Under this program, rural producers were organized into cooperatives so they would have an assured market, remunerative prices, and inputs and services for milk production enhancement, such as better feed and fodder, breed improvement through artificial insemination, and disease control measures.
The program was unique in its approach asmuch as the gift dairy commodities received by India under the program were not consumed by free distribution but were used to manufacture liquid milk, and funds thus generated were reinvested in rural areas in milk production enhancement activities. This coordinated and innovative effort has greatly increased milk production and ushered in a "White Revolution," making India the world's largest milk producer.
Operation Flood or White Revolution was a rural development program started by India's National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) in 1970. One of the largest of its kind, the program objective was to create a nationwide milk grid. The engine behind the success of Operation Flood was Anand Milk Union Limited (or Amul), which in turn became a mega company based on the cooperative approach. VergheseKurien (Chairman of NDDB at that time), then 33, gave the professional management skills and necessary thrust to the cooperative, and is considered the architect and father of India's White Revolution.
Operation Flood helped dairy farmers in directing their own development, placing control of the resources they create in their own hands. A 'National Milk Grid', links milk producers throughout India with consumers in over 700 towns and cities, reducing seasonal and regional price variations while ensuring that the producer gets a major share of the price consumers pay. The bedrock of Operation Flood has been village milk producers' cooperatives, which procure milk and provide inputs and services, making modern management and technology available to members.
The program was implemented in three phases: OF-I (1970-1981), OF-II (1981-85) and OF-III 1987-96). Operation Flood remained the pivot of government policy in the field of dairy development in India, and the number of city milk schemes and milk colonies begun in the 1950s and 1960s declined as the regional and national milk grids started operating under OF.
Milk sheds peaked to 173 in 1988-89 with the numbers of women members and Women's Dairy Cooperative Societies increasing significantly. There was an increased emphasis on research and development in animal health and animal nutrition. Further, innovations like vaccine for Theileriosis, bypassing protein feed and urea-molasses mineral blocks, all contributed to the enhanced productivity of mulch animals.
The second major development in Indian dairy sector policy came when India signed the Uruguay Round Agreement on Agriculture (URAA) in 1994 and became a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO), which made India open up its dairy sector to world markets. The import and export of dairy products was delicensed and decanalized, and trade in dairy products was allowed freely, with certain inspection requirements. The first major step was taken in 1994-95, when the import of skim milk powder (SMP) and butter oil was decanalized; restrictions on the remaining products were removed in April 2002. Moreover, there was a significant reduction in the import tariffs on dairy products after trade liberalization. However, India had bound its import tariffs for dairy products at low levels in the Uruguay Round schedules.
In short, White Revolution was much more than a dairy program. Rather, dairying was seen as an instrument of development, generating employment and regular incomes for millions of rural people. It can be viewed as a long term experiment confirming the Rural Development Vision which resulted in increase in milk production, augmenting rural incomes and providing fair prices to consumers.
Mission Milk: White Revolution II
‘Mission Milk’ has been launched at the headquarters of National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) in the country's milk capitalAnand on 20th April, 2012. It is an ambitious scheme of NDDB to double India's milk production.
The dairy sector at present contributes six per cent to country's GDP and 26 per cent to agriculture GDP and according to NDDB, the demand for milk is projected to be around 200 million tonnes in 2021-22, as against the production of 122.8 million tonnes in 2010-11.
Union agriculture minister SharadPawar unveiled this national plan. In the first phase, which is spread across six years and with a financial outlay of Rs. 2,242 crore, NDP is aimed at increasing the productivity of milch animals through a scientifically planned multi-state initiative.
NDP I will be implemented in 14 major milk producing states, including Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat, Haryana, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Orissa, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal. It is being financed largely with loan from International Development Association (IDA) of World Bank and implemented by NDDB through End Implementing Agencies located in the states.
Total financial outlay for entire NDP spread over 15 years tenure is Rs 17,300 crore, which according to Mr. Sharad Pawar, will be well supported by World Bank if all the states support this project and make the implementation of the first phase successful.
For the total success of this phase, steps will be taken to expand village based procurement systems by strengthening existing cooperatives and facilitating the setting up of producer companies or new generation cooperatives. It is expected about 1.2 million milk producers in 23,800 additional villages will be covered in the project.
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