Kerala’s milk cooperative movement turned a new chapter today by getting a first-ever Milma Bakery and Confectionary unit that will manufacture variety value-added products, including dark chocolates, within the state.
Dairy Development and Animal Husbandry Minister J. Chinchurani opened the facility near Chalakudy in the district, amid plans to employ local labour and better Milma’s profit. The unit at Muringoor has come up in the premises of a Milma chilling plant that functioned for 33 years till February last year. It became redundant when Milma’s decentralised system promoted chilling at primary milk co-ops.
The new unit will initially produce pudding cake, vanilla cup cake, milk bread, milk bun, milk rusk and different types of cookies. Milma chocolates, including the dark variety, will also be manufactured at the unit in the near future. The functioning of the plant is expected to raise the number of cakes by Milma’s Ernakulam Regional Cooperative Milk Producers’ Union (ERCMPU) during the upcoming Christmas and New Year seasons to much more than the usual 50,000 cakes.
Minister Chinchurani, while lauding the efforts of ERCMPU, said the Muringoor unit has been the result of making best use of existing resources. The plant will add to Milma’s range of products, while also adding to their popularity, she said, also speaking about the government’s measures to make Kerala self-sufficient in milk production.
Milma ERCMPU Chairman M.T. Jayan said the farmer’s subsidy will be raised to Rs 500 from Rs 300. Also, a children’s park and a food-crafts unit will come up in the unused space in the 1.76-acre plot at Muringoor.
The ceremony, which was chaired by T.J. Saneesh Kumar Joseph, MLA, was also addressed by Benny Behanan, MP. Other dignitaries included ERCMPU Managing Director Wilson J Puravakkattu, former Chairman John Theruvath and other top ERCMPU functionaries besides members of local civic bodies.