India is the world’s largest milk producing country. Its milk Production for the year 187.7 million tonnes which is around 20% of the world milk production. There are around 16.5 million dairy farmers registered with around 1,85,903 Village Dairy cooperatives in the country. Majority of the milk producers belong to small and marginal category with only 2 to 5 animal holding. The leading milk producing states are – Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Gujarat. The NDDB has already implemented the National Dairy Plan (NDP-I), Dairy Entrepreneurship Development Schemes, Dairy Infrastructure Development scheme (DIDF), AHIDF etc.
The Dairy sector affects the environment in terms of Animal husbandry activity mostly by production of methane, Dairy Processing operations, large Effluents, huge use of Electricity and fuel energy for Heating and Cooling Operations, Large use of Water in dairy operations, and so on.
However, the Indian Dairy Sector, spearheaded by the Gujarat Dairy Cooperatives under the leadership of Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF) and support from NDDB, has been able to effectively mitigate the environmental problems through hard work, dedication, innovation and determination. Some of their initiatives include – Plantation, Rural Sanitation, Bio-CNG production, Use of Solar Energy, Innovations in the Energy efficient equipment and processes, Process Control and by small innovations (kaizen), etc. Their efforts have been recognized nationally and internationally by way of receiving awards and appreciation and also led to cost savings and ultimately benefitted milk producers by increasing their incomes.