Sunday, 23 November 2014

Pakistan fifth largest milk pruducer despite low yield

Despite below 2,000 litre per animal yield in the country as compared to 9,000 liters per animal per annum in Europe, Pakistan is the fifth largest milk producing country in the world with 35.6 billion liters (natural contents) of milk per year.
This was mentioned in a report of International Farm Comparison Network (IFCN). Livestock and dairy sector played an important role in the economy of Pakistan. Livestock contributed approximately 52 percent to agriculture value addition and 11 percent to GDP during fiscal year 2008-09, the report said.
There are approximately 8.5 million families that produce most milk in Pakistan; 80 percent of which are small landless farmers. The per animal yield is below 2,000 liters per annum compared to 9,000 liters per annum in European countries.
However, despite the shortcomings, opportunities lie on the horizon in corporate dairy farming; milk processing and value added dairy and meat products. Corporate sector has taken lead in investing in dairy farming and from 2006 till 2012 more than Rs 9 billion (US$ 95 million) has been invested in the dairy farming sector.
Milk processors on the other hand are also planning to invest heavily in this sector. Asia’s second largest milk processing factory has been set up in Pakistan by Nestle. Nestle Pakistan aims to invest Rs 50 billion in the country by 2014.
Tetra Pak Pakistan invested 120 million Euros in a project in Pakistan in 2010.
Meanwhile, Vice Chancellor of University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences (UVAS) Prof Talat Naseer Pasha told APP that selection of quality animals, genetics improvement for breeding, strong livestock research institutions and milk processing on scientific lines were necessary steps to overcome low milk yield as compared to European countries.
He said local breeds including Sahiwal, Cholistan and Nili Ravi were much better animals as compared to imported cows and buffaloes because local breeds give milk until eight to nine lactations while the imported buffalo and cow give milk just until two lactations.
Therefore, research institutions should adopt latest research and skill focusing on local breeds to raise milk production in the country, he maintained.

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