Taking forward its aim to help the state achieve self-sufficiency in milk production, Kerala Feeds will facilitate low-interest loans for buying cows, the PSU’s Managing Director Dr B Sreekumar said today.
The government’s allocation of Rs 22 crore for dairy farmers affected by the August calamity is insufficient for the deserving to buy cattle. So Kerala Feeds is initiating a scheme in association with the State Bank of India (SBI) to help farmers take loans for the deficit amount, he informed.
Besides, Kerala Feeds will arrange SBI loans for aspiring dairy farmers, he said after inaugurating the Idukki district-level programme of Kerala Feeds’ Snehasparsham project meant to benefit those affected by the floods and landslides this monsoon. The PSU expects cooperative milk societies in the district to help it locate people eligible for such loans that wouldn’t require collateral, Dr Sreekumar said.
Kerala Feeds will also distribute 100 sacks of cattle feed free of cost to farmers selected by the district council comprising representatives of the Dairy Development and Animal Husbandry departments. The 1995-founded PSU’s fourth plant nearing completion in Thodupuzha of this district will add to the company’s efficiency in product distribution across hilly Idukki and neighbouring state of Tamil Nadu.
Noting that Kerala Feeds plays an invaluable in checking the price of cattle feed in the state, Dr Sreekumar said the PSU inspects the raw materials in four stages before sending them to the plants. To a question, he said Kerala Feeds permits dairy farmers and cooperative society representatives to visit the PSU’s plants.
Dairy Development Department Deputy Director S Sreekumar said milk production in the district had dipped after the August deluge. The daily production, which used to be 1.81 lakh litres in Idukki, had come down by 30,000 litres in September, but has risen to 1.76 lakh litres in the past two months, he revealed. Across the primary sectors, dairy industry alone has managed to make this level of recovery, he added.
Animal Husbandry Department Deputy Director Dr Veena Mary Abraham said dairy farmers have the right to know about the ingredients in the cattle feed. Feeding calves with nutritious food is essential for their growing into cows that yield good measure of milk, she added.
Kerala Feeds veterinary doctor Anuraj K S gave a presentation on the various kinds of products of the PSU, explaining about their ingredients and how they add to the quality. Kerala Feeds Deputy Director P Francis welcomed the gathering.