Cow’s milk in India


India since time immeroial has been called a land of milk (and honey to some). Milk, mythologically a food of gods, probably is the most common source of protein and other nutrients for vast majority of population.

The rural Indian landscape is dotted with farmers with few (2-3) cows or buffaoes. A vast contrast to the large dairy farms of US, Europe and other developed countries. A geographically vast milk collection network (in-bound supply chain) with intermediate aggregation points that feed to milk processing units producing one liter bags of pasteurized milk of varying percentage of fat summarizes the Indian commercial milk industry. The local farmers supplying raw milk (often with liberal mix of water) on the back of bicycles & motorcycles is the other facet of the milk supply chain.

One would think that what India is able to achieve in milk production, collection and distribution would also reflect in the quality of milk produced. Unfortunately, it has not. Most people consume milk that comes from numerous animals (both cows and buffaloes), travelled often for a day in large tankers, some time with dose of chemicals to manage spoilage, churned to extract cream and to manage fat percentage, pasturized for health safety, packed and shipped to customers at large. It’s more of a re-constructed product than a natural biological cow’s milk.

This article by Reuters paints even a grimmer picture, claiming most of the milk in India is contaminated.

So, how hard it is to find a pure cow’s milk in india? Really hard, especially if you live in a metropolitan area like Delhi.

There is 1 comment in this article:

  1. 29/10/2013India’s mass market milk supply chain - Mani Agrawal says:

    […] it may lack the distinct quality of pure milk it is an efficient model for the mass market needs of the country. It provides employment to a […]

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