Fresh Milk Promoted to Develop Local Dairy Industry

SRI LANKA - The government aims to develop the local dairy industry by inducing the people to use fresh (liquid) milk instead of imported milk powder.
calendar icon 12 December 2017
clock icon 2 minute read

According to Daily News, to ensure this, there should be a mutual understanding between dairy farmers and the companies. If companies purchase milk from the farmers, they take responsibility of the farmer by entering into an agreement. The legal steps needed in this direction will be taken next year, said Rural Economy Minister P. Harrison.

The Minister expressed these views at a conference held with a group of dairy farmer representatives led by Samastha Lanka Govt. Jana Sammelanaya's Convenor Provincial Council member Namal Karunaratne at the Ministry auditorium, recently.

The Minister said one factor which created problems for dairy farmers in marketing their produce was the use of imported substandard powdered milk in the production of yoghurt and ice cream. To overcome this, it was hoped to make it mandatory for yoghurt and ice cream producers to indicate in the label whether the ingredients included fresh milk or powdered milk.

Initial discussions were held with the Sri Lanka Bureau of Standards in this connection. The necessary steps in this regard would be taken after discussions with the Health Ministry and the Consumer Affairs Authority.

The Minister said an invitation had been extended to all companies to join hands with the Ministry to develop the local dairy industry by launching dairy farms with local or imported cattle. They would be provided with lands owned by the Livestock Development Department or other lands to start up the industries.

When a farmer delegate requested the Minister to minimise milk powder imports, the Minister said they lowered the import tax when milk food importers requested some relief to overcome escalating prices in the foreign market.

Now that the prices in the international market had come down, steps would be taken to increase taxes levied on milk food imports. Referring to the closure of some fresh milk collecting centre by certain companies, the Minister requested dairy farmers to keep the Ministry informed of marketing problems if any, so that remedial action could taken immediately.

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