Budget 2024: India largest milk producer in world but productivity remains low, says Nirmala Sitharaman

Budget 2024: FM Nirmala Sitharaman stresses the government's efforts to support dairy farmers, says a major effort is being made to control foot and mouth disease.

Livemint
Updated1 Feb 2024
Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presents the Interim Budget 2024 in the Lok Sabha, at Parliament House in New Delhi,
Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presents the Interim Budget 2024 in the Lok Sabha, at Parliament House in New Delhi, (PTI)

Budget 2024: Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman stated on Thursday that despite becoming the world's largest producer of milk, India continues to struggle with low productivity of milch animals. The finance minister, in her Budget speech, stressed the government's effort to support dairy farmers and said a major effort is being made to control foot and mouth disease.

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“A comprehensive programme for supporting dairy farmers will be formulated. Efforts are already on to control foot and mouth disease. India is the world’s largest milk producer but with low productivity of milch animals. The programme will be built on the success of existing schemes such as Rashtriya Gokul Mission, National Livestock Mission, and Infrastructure Development Funds for dairy processing and animal husbandry,” Nirmala Sitharaman said in her Budget 2024 speech.

In the fiscal year 2022-23, there was a 4% increase in India's milk production, reaching a total of 230.58 million tonnes. Over the span of the past nine years, India has observed a 58%  surge in its milk production.

Uttar Pradesh contributed the highest share of milk production at 15.7%, followed by Rajasthan (14.44%), Madhya Pradesh (8.73 %), Gujarat (7.49 %) and Andhra Pradesh (6.70 %). As per the numbers, the highest annual growth rate was recorded by Karnataka (8.76%) followed by West Bengal (8.65%) and Uttar Pradesh (6.99%).

Self-reliance in oilseeds production

The minister additionally announced plans to formulate a strategy for achieving self-reliance in oilseed production. Furthermore, there will be heightened endeavours directed towards value addition in the agriculture sector, with a concurrent focus on elevating farmers' income, as stated by the minister.

"Building on the initiative announced in 2022, a strategy will be formulated to achieve ‘atmanirbharta’ for oil seeds such as mustard, groundnut, sesame, soybean, and sunflower. This will cover research for high-yielding varieties, widespread adoption of modern farming techniques, market linkages, procurement, value addition, and crop insurance," Nirmala Sitharaman said in her Budget speech.

 

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