Farmers supplying milk to the Tamil Nadu Cooperative Milk Producers Federation (Aavin) have urged the State government to increase procurement prices.
Citing the example of another cooperative, Amul, which has recently hiked selling price of milk by ₹2 per litre, M.G. Rajendran of the Tamil Nadu Milk Producers Welfare Association said farmers in Gujarat, where Amul is based out of, would get an additional ₹1.50 per litre due to the hike.
“The prices of cattle feed and other inputs for milk production have increased manifold. We spend around ₹40 a litre but get much lesser than what is spent. Since farmers get cash rather quickly, many continue to have milch animals. It has been over 30 months since the last hike,” he said. The quantity of milk that Aavin gets has also come down over the last month or so, he added.
“Right now, Aavin gets around 32 lakh litres of milk per day in place of the 40 lakh litres per day it was getting in the last two years. This has lead to a reduction in the production of butter and skimmed milk powder. Both products are needed for the reconstitution of milk,” Mr. Rajendran said.
Another milk producer said the the number of farmers selling milk to Aavin had decreased in recent months as private dairies offered better procurement prices.
“They recently hiked their procurement price by ₹3 to ₹4 a litre, which has lead to the fall in number of dairy farmers selling to Aavin. If this continues, the three-tier cooperative system in the State will collapse, and farmers will have to depend on the private sector. The State government needs to step in immediately to set right the situation,” he said.