Kothagudem: The undivided Khammam district, which earlier figured in the top, is lagging in milk production. This is attributed to shrinking area of cultivation under paddy and abnormal increase in cattle feed prices and other ingredients like husk, cattle-feed cake and hay in the market. By: P V Satyanarayana
According to Animal Husbandry Assistant Director Dr Venugopal, there are 4,61,620 heads of cattle, including 2,96,298 cows, in Bhadradri-Kothagudem district.
The procurement centres in Bhadradri-Kothagudem district and the Vijaya Dairy procures 25,000 litres of buffalo milk and 12,000 litres of cow milk daily. Yet the demand-supply gap of milk and other milk products is wide to cater to the dairy needs of 10,69,261 population of the district.
So, the district is forced to import milk and other dairy products from Andhra Pradesh. In Bhadradri-Kothagudem, the milk production is not so bright. The officials project a dismal picture in dairy production barring the Manuguru and Burgampahad areas.
The milk procurement in Illandu is minimal. Prior to division of the State, the authorities have prepared a plan to procure milk on a large scale from Nellipaka and other adjoining areas in Bhadrachalam mandal and Alubaka and surrounding places in Venkatapuram mandal. But division of the State put a halt to the efforts.
While Mahbubnagar and Medak districts top the list in milk production and procurement, Bhadradri-Kothagudem figures at the other end of the spectrum figured among the last 10 districts.
Recently Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao announced that the government will supply cows and buffaloes to dairy farmers on 50 per cent subsidy, which is 70 per cent for the SC and STs.
The Chief Minister has plans to revive milk production and procurement in the district by supplying the cattle to the eligible dairy farmers. Whether the scheme impacts the district positively or not would be known only after its implementation.
Source: THE HANS INDIA