News Brief

Tamil Nadu: Chief Minister Stalin Asks Amit Shah To Stop Amul From Procuring Milk In State; Annamalai Says State-Owned Aavin Cooperative Procures Only 14 % Of Milk Produced Per Day

S Rajesh

May 25, 2023, 04:32 PM | Updated 04:51 PM IST

Amul versus Aavin
Amul versus Aavin

Chief Minister MK Stalin has written a letter to Union Cooperation Minister Amit Shah today (25 May) asking him to direct Amul to desist from procuring milk in Tamil Nadu as it is detrimental to the interests of the state-owned Aavin cooperative and would lead to unhealthy competition.

He wrote that while till recently, Amul was only selling its products in the state, using its multi-state cooperative license, it had now set up chilling centres and a processing plant in Krishnagiri district in order to procure milk through Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs) and Self Help Groups (SHGs) in Krishnagiri, Dharmapuri, Vellore, Ranipet, Tirupathur, Kancheepuram and Thiruvallur districts.

Regarding the amount of milk procured by Aavin and the prices offered to milk producers, he wrote that there are about 9,673 milk producers cooperative societies functioning in rural areas, and they procure 35 lakh litres per day of milk from about 4.5 lakh members.

He added that the milk producers are assured of remunerative and uniform prices throughout the year by the cooperative societies.

Further, he wrote, “To increase and sustain milk production in Tamil Nadu, Aavin also provides various inputs such as cattle feed, fodder, mineral mixture, animal healthcare and breeding services for animals of milk producers.

"In addition, it ensures the supply of quality milk and milk products to consumers at one of the lowest prices in our country. Thus, Aavin plays a vital role in improving the livelihood of rural milk producers and meeting the nutritional requirements of consumers.

"...Regional cooperatives have been the bedrock of dairy development in the states and are better placed to engage and nurture producers."

Reacting to the letter, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) state president K Annamalai said that Aavin's procurement of 35 lakh litres per day is only 14 per cent of the total milk produced in the state, which is 244 lakh litres per day.

Further, he said that there are complaints saying that the average milk procurement has reduced to 32 lakh litres per day since May 2021 and thus, Chief Minister Stalin should focus on increasing the daily procurement and improving the livelihood of dairy farmers.

He also recalled that his party had protested against the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) government for not including milk powder in nutrition kits for women and not procuring Diwali sweets from Aavin.

In August 2022, Annamalai had alleged that only 430 ml of milk was being provided in 500 ml packets. He said that as around 70 lakh packets of 500 ml were sold in the state, milk worth an amount of Rs 2.16 crore was being swindled from consumers.

Geopolitics commentator Somnath Mukherjee asked if people should then have region-specific cars, i.e., people in Maharashtra should buy only Tata cars made in the state and not Hyundai cars made in Tamil Nadu.

Of late, the state owned Aavin cooperative has been facing a number of issues like milk shortage and protests by dairy farmers to increase procurement prices.

In the recent cabinet reshuffle, Milk and Dairy Development Minister SM Nasar was dropped. He was replaced by Mano Thangaraj.

Also Read: Karnataka: Amul Vs Nandini Controversy Smacks Of Economic Ignorance And Reeks Of Political Propaganda

S Rajesh is Staff Writer at Swarajya.

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