The State government is under intense pressure from the district milk unions to allow them to hike the price of milk and milk products.
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The Bangalore Milk Union has sought a hike by ₹5 per litre to overcome a steep increase in input cost for dairy farming.

On Wednesday, KMF chairman Balachandra Jarkiholi urged Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai to increase the price of milk. “Karnataka at ₹37/₹38 a litre has the cheapest milk rate in the country. The price of all other commodities have increased,” he pointed out.

The Chief Minister, however, refused to give any concrete assurances. “The issue of milk price hike has come to my notice. But I will not give any assurances here,” he added.

“The rest have to be converted to milk powder. The COVID-19 situation has brought down the demand for milk products. Bamul alone has reported loss to a tune of ₹95 crore by the end of August,” he said.

He urged the Minister to allow unions to hike the price by ₹5 a litre immediately so that farmers and milk unions don’t suffer further losses.

‘Maintain goshalas’

Mr. Bommai asked KMF to look after cows that have been brought to goshalas across the State after the Anti-Cow Slaughter Act has come into force.

“Protection of cow even after it stops yielding is very important. It is our moral responsibility. The government will construct a goshala in every district. The capital investment will be made by the government and the KMF can manage the cows with feed and medicine, among other things. It should be done on no loss and no profit basis,” the Chief Minister said.

Earlier, Animal Husbandry Minister Prabhu Bhavan also urged the KMF to contribute towards maintenance of goshalas. “KMF should set aside funds to look after goshalas in every district,” he said. There could be about 6,000 to 7,000 cows in the goshalas. “Give ₹10 crore for cow protection,” he said.

The potential sale by Fonterra of its Australian operations could have implications for the course of Australia’s entire dairy sector over the next five to 10 years, according to ANZ’s latest Agri Commodity Report.

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