In the “Climate-proof and circular dairy farming in India” project, Van Hall Larenstein University of Applied Sciences (VHL) joined forces with HollandDoor to investigate how Dutch organizations and companies can meet the request for demand for sustainable development in India’s dairy sector. They also investigated how Dutch knowledge on the energy transition can be exported, and how new knowledge can be developed jointly with regional Indian partners. In addition, a new partnership for follow-up research and business development was proposed in October 2022.
During the project’s duration, from January 2020 to October 2022, VHL collected and analyzed information on how dairy value chains in the Baramati/Pune region are progressing towards circularity and climate resilience. VHL also visited the Sahiwal Club Breeding project and the Govind Dairy – TRUST Dairy project to discover how products and services from Dutch companies and organizations can contribute to the development of India’s dairy sector. VHL and HollandDoor’s experts concluded that Indian farmers will need to make higher profits if there is to be any chance for further action to improve circularity and climate resilience.
In the Baramati/Pune region, there is definitely scope to use Dutch service packages for local dairy processors who want to make milk production more sustainable. However, the development of these value chains are vulnerable, and relations with actors on the chains have to be handled with care. A focus on family farms with 10 to 20 cows will mainly support sustainable development in dairy value chains. However, it is important to understand that the decision-making process and the use of data on farms differ from what companies are used to in the Netherlands. Developments in India’s huge dairy sector are likely to happen fast, but they will also differ substantially from developments in most other countries.
The recommendation for the Baramati/Pune is to use the dairy cow management approach of CowSignals®, which results in better animal health and welfare, a lower carbon footprint, better quality of milk and higher profits for the farmer. The introduction of data recording and dairy farm management tools are also an option but only if supported by the training of farmers, including female farmers and extension workers. The recently opened Centre of Excellence in Dairy in Baramati can play an important role in this, according to VHL and HollandDoor.
For more information, please contact Ad Merks