Dairy farmers welcome SUMUL, allege corruption in Goa Dairy

GOANEWS DESK, PANAJI | 21 January 2016 16:28 IST

A group of dairy farmers has alleged huge amount of corruption in Goa Dairy while welcoming the government decision to allow Gujarat-based SUMUL to start operations in Goa.

The group also demands that the government should extend services of SUMUL to four more talukas – Bicholim, Pernem, Ponda and Sattari.

Goa’s BJP-led coalition government has decided to allow Surat district Cooperative Milk Producers' Union Ltd (SUMUL) to operate milk co-operatives only in four hinterland talukas – Canacona, Sanguem, Quepem and Sattari.

“Our first choice would always be Goa Dairy if they improve their functioning and root out the ongoing corruption”, said Shivanand Bakre, a dairy farmer from Karapur in Bicholim taluka.

Addressing a press conference along with four other dairy farmers from Salcete and Sanguem, Bakre alleged corruption in two areas – giving fewer rates for good quality milk and mismanagement in running the factory of cattle feed.

He also pointed out at the unnecessary recruitment of employees, half of whom have no knowledge of dairy farming.

“A milk cooperative in Kolhapur produces 45,000 litres of milk every day with the help of only 40 workers. Then why does the Goa Dairy need 400 workers to produce 70,000 litres of milk”, asked Bakre.

This recruitment policy and highly paid jobs for the unnecessary staff is affecting the dairy farmers in terms of getting less amount of bonus, he said.  

The engineer-turned-milk farmer also dismissed the claim of Goa Dairy that its cattle feed factory runs in loss.

“In fact they produce low quality cattle feed when veterinary doctors tell us half of the problems our animals face would be wiped out if Goa Dairy supplies good quality feed”, he said.

According to Dilip Prabhu, another dairy farmer from Neturli, the cattle feed supplied by SUMUL on trial basis was far better than the one regularly supplied by Goa Dairy.

If Goa Dairy supplies us good feed and gives the rightful rate to the milk, he said, they do not need SUMUL or anybody else in Goa.

“But the monopoly of Goa Dairy has made them arrogant. SUMUL would develop fair and healthy competition which would benefit the farmers”, said Aselmo Furtado, a dairy farmer from Orlim in Salcete.

He also asked why Goa Dairy needs to fear when a district like Kolhapur runs four milk producers’ cooperative societies without any hassles.

Albert Alvares, another milk farmer from Arlem in Salcete, observed that milk business would have died by now if former chief minister Manohar Parrikar had not provided them the support price of Rs 10 per litre.

Suhas Mulgaonkar, dairy farmer form Neturli, in fact said farmers in Sanguem are happy that another milk co-operative is coming to Goa to compete with Goa Dairy.

“This will provide us an opportunity to choose the best available option”, he felt.

Bakre however admitted that Goa government should provide equal facilities to both Goa Dairy and SUMUL without any discrimination. 

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