Milma had recently reduced its milk procurement by 40% owing to the lockdown.

Sumesh Achuthan distribute milk free of cost protest against milma
news Dairy farming Wednesday, May 19, 2021 - 09:57

The Kerala Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation (Milma)’s move to stop collecting milk in the evenings has left several dairy farmers in a fix over what to do with its supply. Many dairy farmers in north Kerala protested against Milma’s move by distributing milk free of cost. Protesting against Milma's move, a group of dairy farmers protested in Chittoor of Palakkad district by distributing several litres of milk free of cost. Dairy farmers distributed milk to the houses of Meenakshipuram in Chittoor free of cost while protesting against Milma. Dairy farmers from Kannur, Kozhikode have also expressed their distress by the move. In Kozhikode, some farmers poured milk on themselves as a form of protest.

Milma collects 7.5 lakh litres of milk every day from the Malabar region (north Kerala). However, they recently decided to reduce the procurement percentage by 40% from May 18 in the Malabar region. It was earlier reported that Milma was unable to distribute 4 lakh liters of excess milk from the north Kerala region during the lockdown.

Palakkad district Congress Committee president Sumesh Achuthan supported the protest by a group of dairy farmers. Somesh Achuthan said that through Milma’s decision, dairy farmers will have to face a loss of Rs 1.25 crore. He said that it will be a huge burden for the people who live on a dairy income. He said that either the government should bear this loss or Milma should revisit their decision.

Amid the lockdown, very few restaurants and other commercial establishments are functioning. This has forced Milma to reduce its procurement from the dairy farmers. There are also reports that milk production has increased in the state with many people taking to dairy farming during the lockdown.

Milma used to normally collect excess milk and send it to Tamil Nadu for milk powder production. However, during the lockdown they were unable to send it to Tamil Nadu, following which they cut the excess procurement. Milma has said that once the situation is back to normal they will be able to procure more milk and send it to neighbouring states.